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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database

AAPG Bulletin


Volume: 65 (1981)

Issue: 4. (April)

First Page: 761

Last Page: 761

Title: Geothermal Research and Exploration in New Mexico: ABSTRACT

Author(s): Kay S. Hatton

Article Type: Meeting abstract


A Department of Energy (DOE)-sponsored evaluation of the hydrologic characteristics of New Mexico's low-temperature geothermal sites is being conducted. Over 40 areas have been designated for possible low-temperature geothermal application. There are nine areas with estimated temperatures of between 100 and 105°C, and three areas with estimated temperatures >= 150°C. Eight prospective high-temperature geothermal resource areas, where public knowledge of successful drilling is lacking, were designated for DOE by New Mexico researchers.

Drilling on state and private lands is concentrated in the Lightning Dock and Radium Springs KGRA vicinities, west of Socorro, east of Las Cruces, east of the Jemez River, and in the Baca Loc. 1 KGRA. Drilling on federal land is concentrated in the Baca Loc. 1, Kilbourne Hole, Radium Springs, and Socorro Peak KGRAs.

Geothermal research at Sandia Laboratories includes: (1) successful testing of a high-temperature borehole temperature-logging instrument, (2) development of an efficient continuous chain bit, and (3) continuation of the Magma Energy Research Project, which was recently involved in drilling into the Kilauea Iki lava lake.

NMIMT has mapped a large, deep magma body and several shallow magma bodies in the crust of the Rio Grande rift near Socorro.

The LASL Hot Dry Rock Geothermal Energy Project has yielded promising technical results; researchers are studying two out-of-state areas for possible hot dry rock demonstration sites: Stumpy Point-Wallops Island in Maryland, and the western Snake River Plain in Idaho.

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Copyright 1997 American Association of Petroleum Geologists