Perspectives of offshore geothermal energy in Italy
1 Dipartimento di Fisica, Università di Milano – Via Celoria 16, 20133 Milano, Italy
2 Eurobuilding S.p.a – Via dell’artigianato 6, 63029 Servigliano ( FM), Italy
Italy is the first European and world’s fifth largest producer of geothermal energy for power generation which actually accounts for less than 2% of the total electricity production of the country. In this paper after a brief introduction to the basic elements of high-enthalpy geothermal systems, we discuss the potentialities represented by the submarine volcanoes of the South Tyrrhenian Sea. In particular we focus on Marsili Seamount which, according to the literature data, can be considered as a possible first offshore geothermal field; then we give a summary of the related exploitation pilot project that may lead to the realization of a 200MWe prototype power plant. Finally we discuss some economic aspects and the development perspectives of the offshore geothermal resource taking into account the Italian energy framework and Europe 2020 renewable energy target.
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