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ONGC Launches Fresh Bid for Geothermal Power in Ladakh

Updated: Apr 23, 2024 04:58:50pm

ONGC Launches Fresh Bid for Geothermal Power in Ladakh

Ladakh, Apr 23 (KNN) Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) is making another attempt to tap into geothermal energy in the Ladakh region, after a previous well drilling effort failed in 2022.

The state-owned explorer plans to drill two new geothermal wells of 1,000 meters depth each in Puga, Ladakh starting in mid-June. If successful, the wells could pave the way for setting up Ladakh's first geothermal power plant of at least 1 MW capacity by next year.

Geothermal energy, extracted via hot water and steam from deep underground reservoirs, provides an emission-free source of electricity and heating.

"Water with a temperature of 220 degrees Celsius is expected at Puga," said ONGC Energy Centre Director General Ravi, who is leading the project. "The steam could first produce electricity and then be used for space heating, aquaculture and herbal spas", he added, reported ET.

ONGC is being advised by consultants from Iceland, which gets two-thirds of its energy from geothermal sources. The previous Ladakh well had to be abandoned due to uncontrolled water flows, but ONGC now has advanced blowout prevention equipment.

Ravi cited the remote location's harsh climate, low oxygen levels and logistics challenges like limited road access as major hurdles.

But ONGC is pressing ahead during Ladakh's summer work window of June to September. Drilling contracts have been awarded and third-party inspections are underway.

Success could open an important clean energy source for the isolated Himalayan region. "It's too cold after September. Before April, roads are ice-covered and not accessible," Ravi said.

(KNN Bureau)


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