LANCE COLLINS: I'd like to ask everyone to please take a seat. So my name is Lance Collins, and I'm the Dean of the College of Engineering at Cornell University. And it's my pleasure to welcome you to this forum, which is really going to be an update on Earth Source Heat. So some of you may recall, roughly a year ago, we had our first community forum to discuss our plans at Cornell to take some important steps forward in terms of approaching a very lofty, ambitious goal of carbon neutrality.
So a couple of years back, we wrote a report that discussed all of the options that we were going to be taking or looked at, in terms of achieving carbon neutrality. And we examined all of those options. And a centerpiece of that report and conclusion was that we felt that a deep geothermal energy-- so what we now refer to as Earth Source Heat, for reasons you'll see in a moment-- was our best prospect. And so that's the focus.
And today is really an update of that project. And so I'll just show you here that it's a group of us that have come from Cornell, consisting of faculty, as well as staff, that will be discussing different aspects of the project. Our goal is that we will be presenting to you for roughly a half hour collectively, and leaving a half hour for your questions at the end.
Now, questions-- we've decided-- so as you came in-- or if you didn't, please go to the desk. There are some index cards. What we'd like you to do is write your questions down. Those questions-- we'll answer as many as we can in the forum. For those that we don't get to, we will respond to you by email. So we want a record. We want a record of all of the questions that you have.
So as I mentioned, I'm Lance. I'm the Dean of the College of Engineering. And let me introduce the other members of the panel. So there is Jeff Tester, who's Chief Scientist for this project. He's the primary academic that's working with other faculty on the research elements of the project. Rick Burgess is the Vice President for Facilities and Campus Services. That's Rick. And he's involved with all of the implementation aspects of this.
Katie Karanen is Assistant Professor of Earth and Atmospheric Scientists. She is a geologist and a specialist that looks at issues around seismicity. Tony Ingraffea is a Professor Emeritus of Civil and Environmental Engineering, an expert on looking at aspects of the encasement and the pipe and the plumbing associated with the project, and will talk to you about how this project is different from shale gas recovery. And then Todd Cowen, who's the Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering-- he's been running the energy section of the Atkinson Center. And way at the end there is Joel Malina, who's going to be at the end and will handle questions.
So you all have seen this diagram before. And I will just sort of quickly work through it. So I don't have a pointer, but if you look at of the far left, you'll see a reference to the hydroelectric plant. So Cornell was really renewable before that was even a term. So back in the 1880s, we could claim carbon neutrality. So we're going to try to return to that lofty goal in a few years, which you'll see, if you look over here, is just a schematic, if you like, of solar panels.
We have over 40,000 solar panels that have been installed. And those are actually supplying roughly 7% of the electrical energy that the campus uses. So we're already making significant progress. If I move to here, the combined heat and power plant-- that was something we installed a number of years ago, which had a dramatic impact, positive, reduced the amount of carbon we were using by, in some sense, removing the coal-fire plant and adding efficiency. Because the plant was now, not only generating electricity, but the effluent was being used to heat the campus. And that reduced us by, I think, 37% of the carbon that we were using. That was tremendous.
And then if I look over here, this is a project that was installed roughly around 2000. And we called it Lake Source Cooling. But essentially, it replaced traditional refrigeration to cool the campus with a heat exchanger, with lake water that was drawn from the depth of the lake. The lake is cold year round, and so it provides enough cooling, if you like, for the campus and a little bit of the town. So that was a major project and arguably, a fairly controversial one that we did early on.
And it demonstrated some things about us-- one, that the academic sides of the campus work in close proximity with the facilities' side of the campus, to enable us to take on a project of that level of complexity. And we were successful in reducing the carbon footprint very dramatically, because we went from a refrigeration cycle, which uses a lot of energy, to essentially just the pumping cost for pumping the water out of and into the lake-- so really, a spectacular success and a demonstration that we can do this.
And so finally, what are we here to talk about is this final one over here, which is what we refer to as Earth Source Heat. Others will talk about this in much more detail. But in simple form, this is using the energy of the earth and a heat exchanger to then heat fluid that is distributed through a district heating system through the campus, to then heat the campus.
So I have coming up a fairly short video, which gives, in sort of schematic form, what we're talking about when we say Earth Source Heat. I'm going to play the video, and then we're going to move on to our other speakers, who are then going to make presentations.
- Geothermal energy is a clean, reliable, renewable source of energy that uses heat stored in the earth's crust to heat buildings or generate electricity. Cornell scientists have studied large-scale geothermal systems around the world and are exploring ways to develop deep geothermal technology closer to home. Scientists will start by gathering data and studying rock formations beneath Cornell's Ithaca campus.
Next, to reach the hottest rocks in our region, scientists would drill a two to four-mile deep test well. The well will be safely enclosed with the highest quality casings, cement, and other materials to protect the environment. Only after successful research safety precautions, community engagement, and other approvals, would scientists drill a second well to complete the system. This would allow water to be slowly pumped into the earth, where it would be naturally heated, pumped back to the surface, and circulated through buildings on campus.
While this is an exciting project, it will take years of careful research and planning to implement. If successful, it will heat our entire campus and create a new renewable energy industry capable of sustainably meeting heating challenges throughout New York state and beyond.
LANCE COLLINS: So great. With that, I'm going to step away and invite Jeff Tester to the mic. Thank you.
JEFFERSON TESTER: Thank you, Lance. OK, if this works, we should be able to go to the first slide. So I've labeled this Common requirements for enhanced geothermal systems, but this could equally be just called the requirements we need for any geothermal system. There are many natural systems around the world, as well as ones that come under the name of enhanced or engineered systems.
The first thing is you have to have a sufficiently high temperature in a fairly large rock mass, and it has to be accessible by, typically, by drilling techniques. The second is the creation of a connected well system, where you're circulating water through a set of injection wells and production wells in a loop system, that we'll explain in a little bit more detail later. But that's separate from what's heating the campus and the district energy system. So in this building that you see, we're exchanging the heat from the hot fluid that's circulating underground, brought up to the surface. And then that fluid would be cooled in the heat exchanger and re-injected into the ground.
So that connected system is important, because it has to last for a long time. You're going to have to make a pretty large capital investment at drilling the wells and putting in the infrastructure you need on the surface to have a system like this operate. So that's important to understand, how large that rock mass would be and how much access you have to it for a certain period of time. We'd like that period to be of the order of 10 years or more at least.
And the final step-- and I've described this already, and you can see it in the video-- is how would this be utilized? In many places around the world, it's used to convert the thermal energy into electricity. In fact, the United States is the largest producer of geothermal electricity in the world. But in other regions, it's also used in the same manner that we would like to use it, which is for district heating. For instance, in the country of Iceland, they're virtually heating the whole country with an extensive district heating system based on low temperature geothermal heat.
So let's move to look a little bit closer at what the resource looks like in our area, because it obviously is different than other parts of the world-- for that matter, in other parts of our own country. And this map on the left is a compendium of data that we've looked at with our colleagues down at SMU University, in Dallas. And it shows, illustrates, what would be the temperature that would be expected in a fairly deep well. This is 5 and 1/2 kilometers. That's over 15,000 feet in the ground, so it's definitely more than a couple of miles, for sure, approaching three miles.
And you can see that in the western part of the country, the hotter colors, the orange and deeper colors, are warmer temperatures-- the scale is over here-- that even in the eastern region-- and this region right here is the Appalachian basin, that many of you are quite familiar with it, and you know where we are located in that-- that there are above average temperatures at the kind of depths we're talking about. This makes it attractive from both a financial point of view and as a transformative way to demonstrate that we might be able to do an Earth Source Heat in a location, like at Cornell.
On the right-hand side, we're looking at a similar set of data, but it's associated with heat flow that's measured near the surface. And you can see, again, this higher than average for this part of the country region where Cornell is located. And if we go a little further into this, an extensive study was made by our group working with colleagues in West Virginia of the entire Appalachian basin. looking specifically at the kind of data that exists.
And I'm sure some of you in this room know that we have drilled a lot of wells in New York and Pennsylvania. And this is 8,000 wells that we have used alone. There are many more wells that have been drilled for analyzing the temperature data.
The second thing is there are a lot of deep wells that have been drilled in our region. And you can see this by, again, the warmer colors, up here in the southern tier section of New York. And this helps inform the process, because we have accurate bottom hole temperatures. So the map I showed you is, in large part, based on this kind of data.
This slides summarizes the details of what we're going to be looking at. So when we drill deep into the formation beneath the site we might pick at Cornell, we'll be going through a large set of sedimentary layers, down to about 9,000 or 10,000 feet, where we'll enter into the so-called crystalline basement rock.
We need to characterize this well. This is all about characterization in the first phases of this project, as you will hear, because we want to better understand what the rock properties are like, what the stresses are like at depth, and certainly, to verify what the temperatures would be like, in order to design an appropriate Earth Source Heat system. And this is a schematic of that heat exchanger I described. So you can see there are two separate loops-- one to heat the campus and the district energy system, and then a separate water circulation system that deals with the geothermal fluid that's produce downhole.
So let me just summarize the points that relate to why we think Cornell is an ideal site for this. First is it's committed, as Dean Collins has said, to carbon neutrality over a relatively short period of time. Second, there's a longstanding tradition of innovative large-scale energy projects, including Lake Source Cooling and other things we've done, and a very enlightened and aggressive facilities group here, who is extremely good at reducing the energy footprint of the campus by improved energy efficiency.
We have a lot of faculty that have expertise that could be quite useful in the early phases, as well as in the later phases of this project. You'll be hearing about some of this later in the presentation that Katie makes, and others. And there are a couple of other reasons-- one, that we live in a higher geothermal heat flow region. And on our eastern sites, we have a connected system that we could use on Cornell property. And so this has an existing infrastructure for district heating already, which greatly cuts down on the kind of capital costs you'd need to implement such a system.
And there is a lot of drilling experience in the area. In fact, as I showed by that earlier graph, there is a lot of experience in drilling deep wells in this region. And that will also help us in assuring that this would be a safe and best practice system that we'd follow. And it's scalable to other communities. We've looked at a study of both New York and other northern tier states, and there's a lot of communities that could benefit from this, especially if we're trying to get to a more renewable future.
Deploying new energy development at this scale creates kind of a living laboratory that Cornell has used as a way to teach students and involve faculty with a full-scale laboratory. And it's obviously useful for workforce development in the region, too. So I'm going to end here and let Rick Burgess tell you about the next phases of the project.
RICK BURGESS: All right, thanks, Jeff. Jeff's laid out an exciting vision for the potential of this project, one that will move us to carbon neutrality and includes exciting possibilities, as well, for our local community and the southern tier of New York. But how do we move from concept to reality? We want to do this thoughtfully. Excuse me, can we-- or this is me. There we go. We want to do this in a thoughtful manner, recognizing there are many unknowns at this point.
So what you see here is an outline of how we intend to approach this project. We start with what we're calling the preparatory phase, or phase one. This is where we do our homework. We're gathering all the available information on geological conditions in our area from a variety of sources, including the data from the wells that Jeff mentioned. We're also going to conduct our own research to characterize the geology and to establish a baseline of conditions. And you'll hear more about that from the distinguished professors here on the panel.
The findings of their research is going to help us to design our project, in other words, give us a sense of what lies below us, where the fractures are, where faults in the rock may lie. And that will help us decide where to place the well, how deep we should go, how much volume we should plan on, et cetera. And once we've done this upfront research and analysis, we would wrap up our preparatory phase by requesting a permit to go ahead and drill a test well. And that next step would also be accompanied by community engagement, just as we're doing here this evening.
And you look there. The bulleted line indicates the risk management aspect. This phase and really every subsequent phase of the project includes a risk management consideration. We want to be thoughtful as we move forward, recognizing that there are unknowns. And we want to check to make sure that we have a high confidence in our success and that we've mitigated the risks that may be present before we move forward.
So after the preparatory phase, the next phase would be to drill the test well. This will give us definitive information on the conditions that we actually will encounter here. We'll have all the cuttings from the well drilling. We'll have temperature readings, et cetera. If the first well performs successfully, we pass our stage gates, we would proceed to the second well, thus establishing the first well pair. This would allow us, as Jeff has explained, to pump water down one well; let it pass through the rock, picking up heat, and withdraw it through the second well; run it through a heat exchanger, and thus, heat the campus.
And if the first well pair perform successfully, we would then look to expand the system with multiple well sets to heat the rest of the campus. Based on our preliminary engineering calculations, again, before we have drilled the first well, we are estimating the number of well pairs to be five or six in total for full deployment across the campus. So now to speak more to our plans on seismic measurements is Professor Katie Keranen. Katie?
KATIE KERANEN: All right, so thanks, all, for coming. So I'm Katie. I'm a seismologist in earth and atmospheric sciences. And so myself and several others in my department have been working on the early phases, I guess, the preparatory phase, as Rick mentioned here, to better characterize the subsurface. And so I'll talk to you specifically about the seismic portions of the initial work that we're doing.
We'll be doing seismic measurements of different kinds, with two primary goals. And the one-- I think you've heard both mentioned today. You may have heard geological characterization mentioned several times. And so the plan here is to basically do something like a tomogram of the earth, instead of your brain or some other part of your body, to establish where the structures are in the subsurface, in order to best design that well pair and the circulation between the wells that was described.
We have trucks that go out and create a vibration in the ground, like stomping your foot, but harder. And we have measurements. Here is a Cornell student putting out seismometers. These are very sensitive instruments that pick up vibrations that you wouldn't feel. And then we use the signal that goes from the truck down into the subsurface and up to the instrument to make those pictures that we make at depth.
And then I'll talk about this more, as I mentioned, coming up. The second major goal of our work is establishment of a baseline. And this is partially done. And so we take an instrument like this. But instead of costing $1,000 and being out for 30 days, they're expensive and more highly sensitive instruments we left out for a year. And we passively listened for any micro seismicity that might already be occurring in the region.
So you may not be aware, but there's seismicity happening almost everywhere at levels that are not detectable to humans, but we can detect with the instruments. And so we wanted to figure out what was going on here as a background, before we move forward with anything else. And we'll also be doing baseline surface measurements of the ground surface.
All right, so the active seismic testing-- this is one of the first things that people in the community may see visibly. And these are pictures that were taken from a similar study here in Ithaca, in 2007. So these photos are from a colleague of mine, Rick Allmendinger. And this was on Warren Road, past Boces. And these are called vibroseis trucks. And in the current plan, we'll be using one of these trucks.
And In the picture here that you see from 2007, there were three trucks. Basically, just to give you an idea of what this will look like in the community, is these trucks move down the road at a slow speed. They stop, and they vibrate the ground for something on the order of 30 seconds. Then they move to the next site, which may be 25 meters, depending on the design of the survey. And they do the same thing again, and they crawl along and do it again.
And so there were some traffic obviously being moved around these trucks down the road. But that's sort of the impact. And they're recorded by these little instruments that you see here. So you may also see crews of hardworking students out in the field, walking around with these little white things and putting them into the ground.
So the outcomes that we expect from the seismic work-- we had the two goals. So the first was geological characterization. And so what we would see from the imaging that I mentioned, from the truck to the instruments, is this time. Or you could think of it as depth into the subsurface. And this is distance along the top. And so we basically make images of where the different geological layers are.
So if you're out hiking in the Gorges, and you see layers in the rocks, we're basically trying to image them to much greater depths, in places where they're not exposed by erosion. And then, if these layers are offset vertically, we're looking at basically those are areas where these fractures are. And so we're characterizing that by imaging it in advance, so that we can best site our wells.
As I mentioned, we'll also establish a seismic baseline. So in the background, how much is the ground already moving? Do we have any activity happening at a very low level on these faults in the background? And then there is also a long-term research goal, which is not to actively image these with these white trucks.
But we want to use any of this little tremor happening on these faults to image them themselves. And if could do that, it would be a massive advance forward in terms of earthquake hazards and any kind of permeability structure. We would be able to best design the wells to maximize the flow between them in the ideal way. I think that one is my last slide. And then we move on to Tony Ingraffea, who will discuss how this differs from the shale gas exploration.
ANTHONY INGRAFFEA: Thank you, Katie. Good evening, everyone. Good to see so many familiar faces. I've been asked to talk to you about similarities and differences between what we intend to do with Earth Source Heat and what could have been happening in our community with shale gas, and what is happening around the country in shale gas. So I'm not going to read each of these three slides. You've been given copies. You can read those.
What I'm going to do is summarize what all these words mean, in terms of similarities and differences, along two lines-- shale and scale. So what's the difference between what we're doing with Earth Source Heat and what's been done with shale? With shale, you're trying to get gas and natural gas liquids out of a shale formation. Quite the contrary, we're going to go to a much deeper set of rock formations, a much older set, a much more dignified set-- yeah, some humor there. You're supposed to laugh at that, folks--
--to mine, what I think is, the only good energy resource that rock can give us nowadays, because of climate change. And that's heat. So the main difference between shale and what we're doing is we're mining heat, not fossil fuels. We're not adding to greenhouse gases. We're subtracting greenhouse gases from Cornell.
Scale, size-- we're not going to create a uniform grid of hundreds of pads in Tompkins County. That grid would invade our community. It would disrespect your residences and our schools and our businesses. We're going to have one pad, and it will be within Cornell and not on the edge of Cornell's property, adjacent to one of yours. We're not going to have 20 or more wells on each of those 100s of pads. As you heard, we're going to have maybe 10 or 12 over a period of decades.
Still on this issue of scale, we're not going to inject 15 million gallons of fracking fluid into each of those 100s of wells. We're going to inject maybe a few 100,000 gallons of mostly water, without the bio sides, without the friction reducers, without the foaming agents, without the pH adjusters, water, and corrosion inhibitor-- the same stuff you use in the radiator in your car. We're not going to have any flowback that we have to transport offsite.
We're not going to have to bring 10 million pounds of proppant to each pad by truck, because we're not going to use proppant. We're not going to have to build natural gas pipelines, because we're not going to transport natural gas. We're going to have one new pipeline set, which will go from the one pad to the places on campus where the hot water will be used to heat the campus. There will be no compressor stations, because we're not compressing any gas. And because there are no compressor stations, , no pipe lines no venting, we're not out into the greenhouse gas footprint. And we're not going to be annoying you with the noise of venting from compressor stations.
So to briefly summarize what you'll be able to read in more detail at your leisure and hopefully ask questions about, I got involved in fracking. You know I've been involved in fracking for my entire professional career, starting in 1874.
And I got involved because we were in the first energy crisis, and I was inspired by the idea of-- pause for effect-- geothermal energy development by fracking. So a similarity here is, yeah, we're going to have to drill a well. We're going to have to drill maybe 10 or 12 wells. We will case them. We will cement them. But because we're only drilling a very small number, the probability of any of those going bad is much smaller. And we're not in a hurry, so we can be very careful about what we do and make sure that the casing and cementing job is done well the first time.
And yes, we might have to frack. If we're lucky, and if we read the signs correctly, and if we execute the engineering correctly, we might not have to frack. Because there might be enough effective permeability in these older, more wonderful rocks that we won't have to. , But if we do it's not going to be with a typical fracking complex, this menu of nasty stuff.
So there are the similarities. And I've been waiting 40 years. I'm book-ending my career with a job I wanted to do early in my career. And thank you, Cornell, for finally giving me the opportunity, and hopefully for you, the community, to give Cornell the opportunity to do this well. So I'm looking forward to your questions. And now I hand over to Todd.
TODD COWEN: Thank you Tony. So my task today is to try to explain to you what perhaps some of the options were we've looked at. And so I'm Todd Cowen. I'm the faculty director for energy at the Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future. I'm also a colleague of Tony's in the College of Engineering, in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering. And I'm a member of the [INAUDIBLE] Committee, what we call the-- form the Options Report, and actually handed to the provost what are the options to heat the campus to meet this commitment of climate neutrality by 2030.
And as you can see from the graph you've got up here, the Cornell campus is a pretty big energy user. And even if you don't know what the units are, you can see some pretty large numbers. And in particular, you can see a trend that we're all very proud of. And that is, from 2008 to 2017, our total energy consumption, the bar graphs, has dropped. Over the last five years, it's pretty stable, if you look at it. But if you notice, there are some negative bars that are growing. And these are things such as the 7 megawatts of-- so our 7% of energy generated by our solar farms, that Lance mentioned, as well as some of the other carbon offsets that we're dealing with already.
Another thing we're very proud of on this plot-- and if you look at the shaded band that is quite big-- it's the third band down on the 2008 bar-- it almost disappears by 2017. That's purchased electricity. So presently, Cornell barely purchased electricity. Between our co-gen plant and our solar farms, we generate our electricity.
What's not on this plot that I'm also super proud of-- and it speaks to the world-leading facilities team we have-- is that, from 2008 to 2017, Cornell has added about 2 million square feet of real estate. And we have to supply energy to that. Yet, look at what we've done with our energy. So we've added about 15% to our square footage, and we have dropped energy use during that.
Much of that is low-hanging fruit, in that we've all gotten better at better energy efficiency-- first, compact fluorescents, then LEDs, better insulation, all those things. And Cornell continues to do that. But we can only squeeze so much out of electricity. In fact, we see right now, we're almost down to zero in terms of our ability to stop purchasing electricity. We are still generating our own.
But with the big bar that's left, the one that hasn't really moved-- in fact, has come up with that square footage-- is the bottom bar. And that is us heating campus. So how do we get rid of heating campus? Well, one option you've heard about today is Earth Source Heat.
let me talk a bit about some of the other options. So there were three options we looked at on this alternatives report-- biomass in a couple of different ways, heat pumps-- many of you know these. They are quite popular in construction, particularly air source heat pumps, in the county right now. We'll talk more about them in a minute; and of course, the direct use geothermal that Jeff and Katie and Tony have been talking about.
So we looked at all these options very carefully at a high level, to understand what they would take to actually meet the demands of heating campus. And so we look at biomass. It's attractive. Cornell is the land grant university to the state. We have large tracts of land throughout the state and the ability, in fact, to manage our forests potentially, our own lands, and generate a large amount of the wood we would need. But we would also need wood from other forests regionally.
If you look at the area, 220 square miles of managed forest would produce enough woody material to heat campus. That's a big number. That's a little scary for a campus our size, which is big. But if everyone needed that kind of amount of wood, we wouldn't have enough forest, obviously, to do that. So it's not a sustainable solution. Also, what's perhaps a little bit more troubling is 22 truck trips per day, five days a week, 52 weeks a year. So that's woody forests, coming from a larger, direct spatial scale, too-- so a lot of truck miles.
Another challenge we looked at was, OK, let's go with a higher density crop, a little more rapidly growing crop, like willow or switchgrass. So there, the energy density is less, but we can grow it on a much smaller amount of land. So 32 square miles-- that looks promising. But the energy density is less, so a lot more truck trips-- 8,000 truckloads per year, 30 truck trips per day. That's about a truck trip every 20 minutes during business hours, during a business week.
So again, we've all gotten stuck behind the coal train, which we're all hoping to see go away. We don't necessarily want to see 20 truck trips-- or rather, every 20 minutes, a truck trip to campus, carrying a lot of biofuel. There are other challenges with biofuels in terms of actual carbon accounting, as well. But we don't necessarily need to go into those to even understand that this solution looks both land intensive and transportation intensive within our community.
Heat pumps, in many ways, are the most popular one, the one I get asked about the most in the cocktail party energy conversations I've had. So the reality is there are two good alternatives, in general, for people working in trying to come up with a low carbon source. And as I said, many of them are in use right now. Ground source heat pumps are preferred, because they're the most energy efficient. They have the highest coefficient of performance, meaning for the least amount of electricity, they can do the most efficient job of heating your residential home or small business, where they are ideal, particularly for new construction.
But the challenge is, when you've got a district heating loop, that you've got to actually meet the heat demand on, you've got to do an enormous amount of wells, and you've got to do it on a rather large piece of land-- so 15,000 wells, each 500 feet deep, about 150 acres. So that's one challenge. Cornell perhaps has that land and could pull that off.
But another challenge is it takes 15% more electricity than we currently use on average. It raises the peak in the energy demand to more than double the peak load. So this is moving the grid demand for electricity in the wrong direction. And we'd have to, not only find the electricity to replace the co-gen plants electric generation-- which is almost meeting all of our electric need-- we'd have to find renewable energy to now replace that and all of this new electricity we're generating with ground source heat pumps.
Ground source heat pumps are, in many ways, the best alternative, if you look at it, even despite this intensity. Because the other option that we get asked a lot about is air source heat pumps. And the main difference is they're just less efficient-- so a factor of two more electricity needed to meet our demands. And so really, there's not an option there for heating a district heating loop the scale of Cornell. It doesn't mean they're not a viable option for smaller footprints, but for a district heating system, they're just not a good solution, given a modern approach of trying to deliver electrons in a renewable fashion. This just drives us in the wrong way.
So one of the things I'm most intrigued about, in looking at Earth Source Heat, is also the collateral benefits. So Jeff mentioned Iceland. Iceland generates a significant economy built around low-cost, carbon-free energy. I would like to think Earth Source provides us-- and I know it does-- the opportunity to do the same thing, whether it be Cornell's links to agriculture through greenhouse agriculture and supplying regionally our own food in geothermal greenhouses, to other low, direct heat uses in industry, that could become an incubator area for cheap heat-needing industries.
So it's a huge opportunity, I think, to think about what the collateral benefits are of having what amounts to waste heat, after we heat the campus. That water is still warm, and it is available to do other low heat-needing resource jobs. So with that, I think it's time to thank you and turn it over to Joel Malina, to try to answer as many of your questions as we can.
JOEL MALINA: Thank you, Todd. As Todd mentioned, I'm Joel Malina, Vice President for University Relations. Part of my division is community relations. And I want to thank all of you for being here. As Rick mentioned, this is our now second cycle through a very concerted effort to make sure that all stakeholders in the community are aware of what we're doing, what we're planning on doing, each step of the way.
This is a public event, but it's the end of a second cycle that's involved a number of meetings with municipal leaders and committees. We've included now, through a second rotation, meetings with the leaders of the City of Ithaca, the Town of Ithaca, the Village of Cayuga Heights, the Village of Lansing, the Town of Lansing, the Town of Dryden, and Tompkins County, both at a leadership level, as well as key committees-- EMC, [INAUDIBLE].
So we'll be back. We're going to be doing this as often as necessary to keep you updated, to learn from your questions, hopefully provide you with the answers that you're seeking. So we do have questions that have been written down. Melissa-- who's got the-- have you got just-- thank you, Melissa. And our goal is to get through as many of these as possible. As Lance said at the outset, whatever we're not able to get through, we will respond electronically.
So if you want to give me a few, and we'll get started. And in terms of my panel, as I read the question, raise your hand if you'd like to be the one answering. So the first one is from Buzz Levine. What are the expected dollar costs for first the first six years, one pair of wells, and the costs for the next approximately 10 years, 4 or 5 more pairs? And secondly, what are the hoped for sources for those funds? Who would like to handle that. Is that a Rick Burgess question?
RICK BURGESS: I think I'll start. And then Lance can chime in on the money, as the head of our fundraising effort. So we estimate that probably our upfront preparatory phase is going to run us about $4 million. And we think approximately another 15-ish to get the test well on the ground-- so probably close to $20 million to get through the first part. And then I don't know if we'll get some economies of scale, because we know what we're doing to complete that second well. But we're probably talking in the $40 to $50 million range for the first well pair, to include some analysis along the way. So that's what we're looking at, and Lance can speak better to where we are and where we intend to go on the money.
LANCE COLLINS: Everyone always turns to the dean when it comes to money. So the approach that we're making, this is not something that we feel that Cornell, all by itself, can fund on its own. And in fact, what we will be doing is looking to build a consortium of sources of funding. So this includes things like the state. We think the state could play a role in helping us, particularly in the early stages. As we move from phase to phase, we are de-risking the technology, and then it becomes more and more attractive to other sources of funds.
We think that private industry will be helping us with this. And we want to work in partnership with them. So we imagine building a consortium of companies. And we're not just saying a single company, but a consortium of companies that would be buying into and then potentially taking advantage of technology that's developed, as we go along.
And then finally, there's foundations. And in fact, about a year ago-- maybe it was a year or two ago, I'm not sure-- you might recall that some of the major foundations, like the Gates Foundation and Mark Zuckerberg and others, recognized that renewable energy was in somewhat peril state, because of it's connected to an industry and an economy that fluctuates a lot and can put these sorts of technologies into and out of the market, so to speak, if we just allowed it to be purely driven by market. And so foundations, I think, will be playing a significant role in building up the resources that we need.
Now, I view this as very positive. Because what I think of as another collateral benefit of this project is we potentially could be starting a new industry. I think it's important to recognize what we're doing here is very different than what's done in the West Coast, or even in Iceland, where they're very close to the lava, and so they're able to operate to produce electricity. Here we're talking about producing heat.
We're talking about doing it in an environment that's not as favorable. That sounds like, why would you want that? But what it means is that it would be opened up to a wider range of places across the world, frankly. So I think we can be giving birth, in some sense, to a new source of energy.
JOEL MALINA: Thank you. Yes, Todd.
TODD COWEN: Joel, I'll just mention that also, we've actually gotten down the road with some of that fundraising. So we do have an active Department of Energy grant and some philanthropy that's come in, interested in kicking off the basic research at Cornell behind this, that perhaps Lance or Jeff knows the number. About 1.1 million of that first 4 that Rick mentioned is already in hand.
JOEL MALINA: Great, Tony, did you have something to add?
ANTHONY INGRAFFEA: No.
JOEL MALINA: OK. This next question, unattributed, but the question is, why doesn't Cornell University do what all the cool kids do-- I won't be offended-- such as universities in Denmark, Sweden, and Finland, and use a biomass-powered steam co-gen plant, which could be installed by next year? This would ensure a market for approximately $20 million of biomass to be provided by local farmers, which translates to approximately $80 million in local economic benefit. Plus, this can be done fast. Local benefits from fracking the bedrock equals $21 PP, per person-- I'm hoping I'm getting that right.
AUDIENCE: No, it was zip.
JOEL MALINA: Zip, thank you. An, zip dollars-- a clever way of saying no, in cost. Thank you, sir. Who would like to address this idea? Todd?
TODD COWEN: I mean, I'll start by resummarizing what I mentioned-- one, the impact from the amount of land needed for the size of the community is not sustainable. It's not a viable solution for communities of scales of 30,000 to 100,000 to implement. We would take up more than our share of resources. Two, the number of trucks we have to generate, and the challenges there are tremendous.
And three, I would argue-- and this is a little bit out of my area, so I turn maybe to the Jeff Tester, to step in and correct me, if I'm wrong. But the greenhouse accounting on that is still a challenge to actually close the loop on. It is not clear by any means that that is a net zero solution.
JOEL MALINA: Yes, Jeff?
JEFFERSON TESTER: So if I could add to that, too-- so I guess I would have to assume that Cornell is going to do that right and try and lower the carbon footprint. But actually, biomass is a part of our strategy for the longer term, because we have, as many of you know-- you live in this region like I do-- there are several really cold days that we have, like 20 or so cold days a year. And it makes no sense to try and design the Earth Source Heat system to cover all of the days, to cover the peak days.
So on those cold days, we would strongly consider-- and that was also part of the report-- that we would use biomass for peaking. And in that case, we'd have a lot fewer trucks, a lot more sustainable ability to develop and utilize biomass sustainably, using a lot of our own land. And so I think that's a good hybrid solution that still would involve the direct use of biomass.
There are other efforts underway on campus, as well, to use waste that are accumulated-- food waste, in particular; other ag waste in the area. So the combination of all of those, as well as sustainable energy crops, whether they're woody, biomass, or switchgrass or willow, provides an opportunity for integrating all of this into an energy system. And that's part of, I think, the overall vision, as well, as you can see from the first figure that Lance showed.
RICK BURGESS: Yeah, and if I could just add to that one, I think there is a-- I don't want to read too much into the question-- but there is a question of what's the economic benefit beyond just Cornell, right? And I think there is an opportunity there, because once, if we prove this out, once we've gone to the trouble of drilling this deep well, and we've got it up, it's a small marginal expense to tap off that pipe and use it for other uses.
So Todd spoke to being able to heat greenhouses. You can use it for other things that don't require really hot heat, but a much milder temperature, but that could be used for other drying type operations, animal husbandry. We went to Iceland and saw them raising fresh flowers and herbs. It was late winter. It was cold outside. So there are opportunities there that, if this thing works, go far beyond just us being able to heat the facilities on campus.
JOEL MALINA: Great. The next question-- how close to central campus will the wells need to be located? Rick.
RICK BURGESS: I'll take that one, too. We don't know. It's going to be an interesting engineering problem, and we need to start with the work that our research professors are going to do with getting a good look at what's below us. Because that may influence where we end up putting our wells. Obviously, if we're trying to heat the campus, closer is better, because you don't run pipes long distance. But it all needs to work.
And we saw-- again, I'm going to refer back to my trip to Iceland, because it was such a good illustration-- they had pipes running a good long way from a well field 15, 20 miles into Reykjavik. So it can be done. They lose a little bit in transmission, a very well insulated pipe. So you can do it. But all things being equal, closer would be better. But we still have that to work out exactly with the siting. And then once we figure out the siting, where do we run the pipes to get to campus?
JOEL MALINA: Thank you, Rick. Some questions from Jim Strate. What are the diameters of the wells? Maybe I can take them one at a time, instead of asking all four. Who can speak to the diameters?
ANTHONY INGRAFFEA: Good question. And again, this is a difference between shale gas and Earth Source Heat. A shale gas well, as you know, goes down 5,000, 6,000, feet, and then goes out for 10,000 feet. And the production casing, the smallest diameter that is used to transport the hydrocarbons to the surface, is only about 4 inches in diameter. But they use a lot of pipe.
With Earth Source Heat, the preliminary concepts that we have, you start off with a hole that's about three feet in diameter. And at the bottom of the hole, it's about 12 inches in diameter. You need that larger diameter, because you're not transporting a gas. You're transporting a liquid, and you have to have a high rate of flow. The amount of hot water per second that's coming up is very important in the design of the system and its efficiency and its cost. So you're drilling a wider diameter hole than you would for shale gas. Good question.
JOEL MALINA: What happens to the wells once they're decommissioned?
JEFFERSON TESTER: So hopefully, this will not be on the same time scale as an oil or gas well, for sure, because we're in this for the long term. And I think Tony mentioned that we would very much be following best practice. We want these casings to last. And so the cementing operation would be carefully monitored, as well as the wells themselves in time. And so I would expect that decommissioning would be at the order of these kind of lifetimes that we're talking about, of certainly more than a decade, maybe even more than that. Because it's possible to reuse some of the wells, as well.
One of the great features about the earth in the stored heat and the energy in the earth is that it stays there a long time, because the thermal conductivity of the rock is low. And in fact, there's so much of it available to us under our feet here, if we go deep enough. And that allows us to use a relatively small volume of rock for a long-term, sustainable heat production.
So it's very conceivable we would operate part of the system for a while and let it rest-- and it actually recovers when you rest it for a while-- and then go to another zone fairly close by, using the same set of production and injection wells. That's going to be worked out as an important learning detail as we go through this. There are many geothermal wells, though, that have been in operation for decades. So decommissioning is not the same sort of animal as it is with oil and gas.
JOEL MALINA: And Jim's final question is-- what can go wrong, and what has gone wrong? Fair question.
RICK BURGESS: Yeah, there's lots of things that can go wrong.
ANTHONY INGRAFFEA: You start.
RICK BURGESS: Yeah, any drilling operation involves risk itself. So pipes can break. You might have other small issues associated with the plumbing that would have to be fixed I think that we've covered some of the other risks that are associated with it, but careful monitoring of the seismic activity is important. We would be looking at water, and if there was leakage in any of the casing cement annuli, we would have to be careful about that and fix that.
The good thing is we're not in a big hurry here. We want to make these things last. And that is why, I think, the engineering commitment of Cornell would be front and center on this, to make sure that it does last. But you guys can add to this, certainly, Tony and Katie might want to add to some of the other risks.
JOEL MALINA: Tony? Katie?
KATIE KERANEN: All right, so Jeff mentioned the seismic risks. When we're doing an enhanced or stimulated geothermal well, we're putting water into the subsurface at higher pressures. And when we're moving the fluid through the cracks in the rock, there can be earthquakes. I would remind you that earthquakes can range from me stomping my foot on the floor, and so about that much energy, to the ones that we hear about more often in the news. And so typically, with these types of wells, they're on this lower end where you wouldn't notice them.
In some past geothermal operations, there have been felt earthquakes. There was one that basically was felt in Switzerland. And it was a surprise. And so that's one of the reasons we wanted to be here with you today, is that you're aware of this. And it's not necessarily going to happen. Typically, these will be kept at those lower levels. But that is what we will have the monitoring done for. That's why we'll have the earthquakes [INAUDIBLE].
And basically, the geothermal community broadly has developed a stoplight system, they call it. So it's green-- there's no activity. We keep going. Yellow-- hey, let's pay attention; red-- we just basically look at the operations. And so there is a formal process built in, and we will have the instruments out monitoring through it. But that is one of the challenges that we are addressing most seriously. And that's why the seismic work is the first part being done.
JOEL MALINA: Tony.
ANTHONY INGRAFFEA: Yeah, I don't want to end on too depressing a note. But you asked the question, so I'll give you some answers. In two categories, the kind of things that you could expect to happen, whether you're drilling a gas well or an engineer geothermal well, that can be overcome. A stuck drill bit-- you get a couple of days of delay. You go fishing for it, and get it out. There goes $10,000. A collapsed hole, which might be associated with a drill bit or not-- so you might have to do a side track. For those of you who don't know , talk to me later-- again, extra time, extra delay, more cost.
But those things can be overcome, because the industry, the same industry we're going to be counting on, for drilling, casing, and cementing our hole, knows how to solve those problems. From my perspective, the biggest potential showstopper for production is we do not establish connectivity between the injection well and the extraction well. Or worse, because it will be frustrating, we establish connectivity, but it's a short circuit-- meaning that we have a very high rate of flow between the injection well and the extraction well in such a way that we're not picking up enough heat to make it work. So that's a possibility.
We had to face the possibility that the first attempt to establish connectivity doesn't work. Then we have means to try other things. And so that's, from my perspective, the thing that can cause the most delay, the most increase in cost. And potentially, if nothing works, we're done. Or we start over again with another investment, with another set of wells, and hope that it works.
JEFFERSON TESTER: So I would put these in the category of technical risk, as to whether the program works. But that's, to me, a good reason why universities should be involved at this stage. There is technical risks associated with it. It also makes it exciting in a way that this is not the same thing as installing a geothermal heat pump at your house, like I did a few years ago. But the payoff is potentially huge, and I think it's really potentially transformative.
The United States started district heating in the 1800s, in Boise, Idaho. We were the first country in the world to do this. , We got out of that business really quickly because we had a lot of other options-- gas and oil, et cetera. But it's not that this is a technology that can't come back in a very different way, because we really need it. Now, there are other risks that we have to face up to, whether it's climate change or the deplete-ability of fossil resources. And there aren't a lot of options for heating, as we've pointed out in this talk.
So this is why I like to use the word engineered geothermal systems, because that's really what we're supposed to do as engineers, is figure out how to make these things work. We are not inclined to give up immediately, but we would have to try some different methods to make this connectivity work. You saw that with the second bullet I had on the requirements for all geothermal systems. And it's front and center in our thinking.
JOEL MALINA: Great. We do--
TODD COWEN: I want to add just one other point.
JOEL MALINA: Yes, but we do have six more questions, and I think we can get through them.
TODD COWEN: It will take me 10 seconds. But the other thing that was on a slide, that may have not been obvious why it was on the slide, is a lot of what's going on right now is what we call baseline monitoring. So we have wells out to look at what the current water conditions are, these passive and active seismic studies underway to look at what the current level of activity is, so we know what the baseline is, so that if we get to the point of doing anything, we know if there's a change.
JOEL MALINA: So this next question is a bit of an overlap. We've addressed some of it, but there are some elements which we can add to. You mentioned you were going to identify risks and then mitigate them. What are these risks? Some of these I think we've covered, which is technology, mechanical, environmental. But he's also, or she is also, mentioning political risks. Would anyone like to speak to either political or other risks that we haven't yet addressed?
JEFFERSON TESTER: You mean the risk of failure?
JOEL MALINA: Yes, Lance.
LANCE COLLINS: So I am not exactly sure I understand what the term political means in this context. But I do want to point out that this is a project that has a great deal of visibility on the campus, right? So this is something that I annually report out to the University assembly. Faculty are paying a lot of attention to it, and so forth. And so there's a great deal of interest. I like to see that, in some sense, is the wind is at my sails, as opposed to seeing it as a negative. It is something that we-- it's a point of pride that we're trying to do something really difficult.
As we're talking about all of the risk side, I just wanted to mention a reward. It's been mentioned, but I wanted to underscore it a little bit. And that is the living laboratory has been spoken to, but what I'd like to say is that the project of designing and developing this-- this is not off-the-shelf technology. We're trying to advance the state of the art to create something new. As I mentioned, it could be a new industry that, right here in central New York-- which I'd be very proud of to be part of.
But I also want to point to the fact that students will have all kinds of projects that will be related to this. And so it's part of our educational mission. And in some sense, if it weren't, it would be less interesting to me-- because that's what I do, is educate students and oversee the education of students. And so there's really going to be literally dozens of projects that are going to come out of this, each of which will inch this a little bit further. So think of the excitement that you build around that. And so that's what I mean. There is a politics there, but it's, in some sense, a politics that's very much behind this project.
JOEL MALINA: Thank you, Lance. Three separate questions-- what is the length of time, as well as the distance that the system will remain hot enough to be effective? And there are two follow-on. But let's start with that-- length of time and distance.
JEFFERSON TESTER: OK, so the length of time is what we're trying to assess in this first two-well circulation system. But we would be thinking about designing a system in terms of the well placement, based on the results of all this characterization work, that would last of the order of a decade. We've established-- I mean, natural geothermal systems that exist around the country and in other parts of the world tell us what the flows have to be going through those systems in a pair of wells to make it economic. So we have a base case set of conditions in mind.
Whether we achieve that or not gets to the point that Tony was making. That's what we have to find out. So issues associated with short circuiting and things would have to be addressed over the long term. We're working on techniques right now as part of our research, that Lance referred to, that will help us interrogate the early operation of this system to get a sense of how long it would last. And I think that covers most of it. What was the other part of if?
JOEL MALINA: Well, here's the next one, which, I think, Jeff, you'll be the one. You mentioned there being already some geothermal wells that are in excess of three miles deep. Where are they located?
JEFFERSON TESTER: OK, so these are wells-- at least, in our region, these are not geothermal wells. These were wells that were drilled specifically for oil and gas exploration or production. It turns out that we have recently discovered that in the town of Waverly-- which I believe is about 20 miles south of here-- that there's an 11,000-foot well that's actually at 125 degrees centigrade. So put it in Fahrenheit, that's well above the boiling point of water. And that is very encouraging, because that's close enough-- that's the deepest well we know that's close to where we're thinking about, an activity on the Cornell campus.
So there is a lot of other data, as you saw from that map, of deeper wells in the region. But none of them are specifically geothermal wells. And most of them end when you get through all of the sedimentary layers that we've been talking about, because they're interested in hydrocarbon production, not going into the granite.
JOEL MALINA: The last of this set of questions is not about Earth Source Heat, but it's related to Lake Source Cooling. We could either address it now, or maybe there could be a post-event conversation. But what are recent studies of Lake Source Cooling showing regarding increased lake temperature? Either one of our panelists-- I know Bert is in the audience.
TODD COWEN: I could try it. There's no indication that the lake temperature is changing in the Lake Source Cooling. On top of my head, my memory is that the amount of heat rejected by the Lake Source Cooling Project is equivalent to something on the order of four or five hours of extra sunshine on the surface of the lake a year. And so the annual cycle of the lake just mixes that back out.
JOEL MALINA: Great. I just want to confirm we have four left. I'm going to look-- Melissa, just we're at 6:30. Are we able to go longer?
SPEAKER: Yes. [INAUDIBLE]
JOEL MALINA: Fabulous. So let's see if we can get through these. This is a question from Joe Wilson. Won't there be a 16 plus year gap when gas use will go up, unless you use heat pumps with electricity coming from renewables that you could place on Cornell land?
RICK BURGESS: Well, I'll take a crack at that one. I think there is certainly a time for us to explore the viability of Earth Source Heat. And we're going to do that, and we've laid out how we propose to at least begin that process. We have a really smart team of engineers in facilities.
And I was talking to Joel before we got going. I just concluded a 30-year career in the Navy. I had responsibilities with respect to the Navy's facilities and worked extensively with facilities engineers. And I've got to tell you that the team at Cornell is very, very impressive. They are a sharp crew. They've been doing this a long time, and they're very, very good at it.
So they have had a sustained program over really a couple of decades, in terms of improving the energy performance of the existing buildings. So the fact that we have an implementation timeline to get to Earth Source Heat, the rest of the situation is not staying static. We are continually reinvesting in energy conservation measures on the rest of the campus. And that's what leads to some of the statistics that Todd mentioned, of being able to increase our square footage and still bring down our energy usage and our greenhouse gas emissions. So it's not a static situation at all. We continue to reinvest and analyze and improve the performance across the board on the campus.
JOEL MALINA: Thank you, Rick. This next question is from Ed Wurtz, from the town of Caroline. Have you done an estimate of a levelized cost of energy, dollars per kilowatt hour, for this type of energy? Who would like-- Jeff.
JEFFERSON TESTER: Yes, so again, we're not talking about necessarily electricity. So we tend to put it in different units. But we call it levelized cost of heat. And traditionally, in the US, that would be compared to what it would be equivalent to for per million BTUs, which is the common unit. And so if you look at what you're paying for delivered natural gas at your home in Ithaca, if you're just a resident, that number is pretty big. It's nowhere near the same as what wholesale gas prices are.
But my recollection from my own data that we looked at around the county is it's about $14 a million BTUs delivered to the house, because it includes the infrastructure and transmission and distribution costs. To the campus, obviously, it's a different story with respect to that. But so it's that basis that we're looking at what the levelized cost of heat would be, somewhere of comparable to what it would be for a residence-- so of that range.
And we actually did this for a whole statewide study, actually looking both at New York and Pennsylvania, and identified where the demand centers were, what depth we would have to drill to, what the cost would be associated with that. And those levelized costs-- and this is for a commercially mature system, assuming we're successful in connectivity, flow, and things like that. You have to make some assumptions, or you can't come up with a levelized cost of heat. They're very comparable. They are certainly within a factor of two, sometimes right in the same range as current residential costs. So I'm attracted by that. That's a lot different than trying to generate electricity with this. We could not do that.
JOEL MALINA: Lance.
LANCE COLLINS: I know that our options report looked at the economics of the different approaches. I think there's an enormous capital cost up front, which is considerable, to put in the hot water district heating system and to build the geothermal system. But once it's built, even with our incredibly low fracked gas costs of today, I think that my recollection was that it was literally half the cost to operate, to heat the campus, the cost. Because now your cost is simply the pumping cost of water through the system, and that was even below relatively cheap costs.
What's difficult is that we can't predict. It's very hard to know what the price of gas is going to do over a 20-year period. So we don't know how, from a return on investment. That was a very tricky part of the calculation.
JOEL MALINA: Excellent. This is from Mark Hammond. What process will be used to award engineering contractors with the necessary work, for example, drilling companies? Will local central New York contractors be given preference, or will companies from far afield be awarded the work?
RICK BURGESS: We haven't gotten to that yet.
JOEL MALINA: Good answer. Perhaps, Mark, we can keep you updated as we get closer to those considerations. Thanks. Thank you for raising it. This is from Jean. What gases and minerals are dissolved in Earth Source Heat water? Which of these must be purged before use or reinjection of the water? What is their anticipated environmental impact? Jeff?
JEFFERSON TESTER: We can start with this. But look, this is part of our objective in the whole first phase of this project. We're going to be going into a rock region that, if we're in the Precambrian and the crystalline basement, it'll be a much different situation than if we're in a permeable region above. There will be some dissolved minerals that could be present, but until we actually drill into this and actually produce fluids from it, we're not going to be able to answer that question exactly.
However, the type of rock we might be in is pretty benign at the kind of temperatures we're talking about. We don't expect to see a lot of active chemical attack, because the water temperatures are lower than they would be in some geothermal systems. So historically, in geothermal environments, no one will tell you exactly what you have until you drill the well and produce it for a while.
So you can see huge variations in salinity levels, total dissolved solids, other gases present, and things like that. They would have to be managed well. I mean, that's part of our engineering obligation. Our objective is heat now, and you have to keep that in mind-- and longevity to this system. We do not want to finish operating the system in a few months, so we have to be very careful about the water chemistry. But there's a lot of experience with handling that in geothermal systems, so I'm not pessimistic that that is a high-level risk for us, but one we have to pay attention to.
JOEL MALINA: Great. The last question-- we've touched on this somewhat. I have a feeling, Lance, it will be coming to you. It has to do with financial support. What financial support have you identified to date, and how long do you anticipate taking to raise funds?
LANCE COLLINS: Yeah, so as was mentioned before-- and I think Jeff is actually PI on this-- is that we have a DOE grant that I think is in excess of $700,000. And then the other source of funding that we've raised so far has been two gifts from alumni that total to roughly $700,000. As was mentioned, that phase 1, that preparatory phase, total cost is $4 million. And I'm currently actively fund-raising the remaining funds.
I don't know if we talked about the periods of time, but I think phase one is roughly a two-year period, believe it or not, in which we will be doing lots of the design work, exploratory work, in terms of siting where the system's going to go. In that period of time, I'm confident that I'll be able to raise the remaining funds, some of which will come from-- could be philanthropy, some of which would come from the state. And so now, the next step is where we will be beginning to do things with building the consortium in private industry.
TODD COWEN: So I'll do one thing.
JOEL MALINA: Yes, Todd.
TODD COWEN: As an engineer who's been chastised for this before, and sitting with, also, military up here, we love our acronyms-- so DOE, Department of Energy; PI, Principal Investigator. So Jeff is the lead scientist on that Department of Energy grant.
JOEL MALINA: So was Magnum PI a--
A little different-- and with that little bit of humor, I want to thank all of you for coming out for what were extremely on-point questions. I want to thank the panel. Please pay a note to the website, where you can find additional information. And as we said at the outset, we will be coming back to the community every step of the way. So please keep an eye out for future updates. Please let your friends and neighbors know we want this conversation. It can only help the long-term prospects of the project. So have a great day, and thank you again.
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Cornell University hosted a community forum on May 17, 2018 in downtown Ithaca to provide an update on Earth Source Heat (ESH), our version of an enhanced geothermal energy system, that scientists and facilities experts believe could hold the potential for a research-driven solution to sustainably heating our Ithaca campus without the use of fossil fuels. If proven viable, ESH could lead to a new sustainable, scalable solution to heating challenges throughout New York state and around the globe.
Featured panelists: Lance Collins, the Joseph Silbert Dean of Engineering; Jefferson Tester, the Croll Professor of Sustainable Energy Systems and chief scientist for Earth Source Heat; Rick Burgess, vice president for facilities and campus services; Katie Keranen, assistant professor of earth and atmospheric sciences; Anthony Ingraffea, the Dwight C. Baum Professor Emeritus in Engineering; and Todd Cowen, professor of civil and environmental engineering, and the Kathy Dwyer Marble and Curt Marble Faculty Director for Energy at the Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future.