Various resources are used globally for producing energy, though one of the most basic resources we have utilized is through the process for geothermal energy. Geothermal, “geo” meaning earth and “thermal” meaning hot, quite literally utilizes the inner earth’s heat to generate energy. The inner core of the earth is extremely high temperature and contains lots of moisture, these two aspects are at the centre of the process of producing geothermal energy. It can be used for many purposes, but most notably for heating and cooling.
Electricity can be generated through geothermal energy using steam and turbines. In this process, large tubes and drilled deep into the ground to absorb and extract hot water, this water produces steam at a high volume which is then used to rotate a turbine being used to power a generator, making electricity. At the same time, the extracted water goes to a cooling tower where it will eventually go back below the earth and heat up once more.
Heating for a building, or other purposes, using geothermal energy is done using a circulation process. Pipes that run in a loop underground are connected to a pump. Water, or sometimes some other liquid solution, is run through the pipes and as it travels underground the water will begin to rise in temperature, when it reaches back to the pump, the heat from that water escapes into the building’s ventilation and warms it. This cycle is repeated many times to maintain the heat.
To cool using geothermal energy, a similar process to heating is undergone. This time, the water/fluid takes heat it has absorbed from the building and is run through tubes underground in a loop. As it travels, the heat will expel into the ground and the water will return cooler, absorb more heat from the building and repeat the cycle. With this process, heat is constantly being absorbed and taken away allowing for the building to cool.
Geothermal Energy and Farms
Since geothermal energy can be tapped into in many places, a farm could potentially utilize it like anyone else. Geothermal heating and cooling could be used to regulate temperatures in the buildings on farms and if in the case of a local geothermal power plant, it can be used to power the buildings and equipment for a farm. Somewhere where geothermal energy might have a unique advantage for farms, however, is in greenhouse farming. Any plant that needs certain climates to grow can help be maintained using the heating and cooling capabilities of geothermal energy.