Investigating the Geothermal Energy Potentials within the Central Benue Trough Nigeria: Insight from Airborne Potential Field Data


Authors : Egwuonwu, Gabriel Ndubuisi; Nnaemeka, Ejike Kingsley; Orji Obinwa

Volume/Issue : Volume 8 - 2023, Issue 3 - March

Google Scholar : https://bit.ly/43uxUln

Scribd : https://bit.ly/41xR4Wl

DOI : https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.7858900

Abstract : This research focuses on using geothermal parameters of Curie point depth, geothermal gradient and heat flow from spectral techniques of aeromagnetic data in finding the possible geothermal hot spots existing around this region of the Benue Trough Nigeria in order to help solve the energy-related challenges facing the country. The study adopted qualitative methods of total magnetic intensity (TMI), reduction to the magnetic equator (RTE) as well as quantitative interpretations of spectral analysis which involved division of the reduction toequator map into 25 equal overlapping spectral blocks and the log of spectral energies were plotted against wave number. The Centroid depth (Z0) and depth to top boundary (Zt) obtained from the plots, were used to calculate the Curie point depth ( CPD), which was later used for computation of geothermal gradient (GG) and heat flow (HF) of the area. The results computed shows that, Curie point depth, ranged from 8.61 to 36. 04 km with an average depth of 14.81 km, the geothermal gradient ranged between 16.09 to 70.81 °C /km, with an average value of 45.39 °C /km while the heat flowranged from 40.23 to 177.03 mWm-2 , with an average value of 113.49 mWm-2 . It observed from the contour maps that, the deepest Curie point depth is located southwestern part of the area, while the shallower and moderatedepths spreads across approximately 65% of the total research area. The geothermal and heat flow contourmaps showedgeothermal energy hot spotsaroundSouthwestern, Eastern and Northernparts areascorresponding to Otobi, Otukpo, Taraku, Nov, Moi Igbo, Igbor, Wannune, Lafia, Giringwe, Fiyayiand Eastern parts of Kastina- Ala. Thus, this hot spot areas is suitable for geothermal energy exploitation/explorationand harnessing this areas will address the power challenges across the states of this study and Nigeria at large.

Keywords : Airborne Magnetic Data, Curie Point Depth Isotherm, Geothermal Gradient, Heat Flow, and Geothermal Energy Potentiality.

This research focuses on using geothermal parameters of Curie point depth, geothermal gradient and heat flow from spectral techniques of aeromagnetic data in finding the possible geothermal hot spots existing around this region of the Benue Trough Nigeria in order to help solve the energy-related challenges facing the country. The study adopted qualitative methods of total magnetic intensity (TMI), reduction to the magnetic equator (RTE) as well as quantitative interpretations of spectral analysis which involved division of the reduction toequator map into 25 equal overlapping spectral blocks and the log of spectral energies were plotted against wave number. The Centroid depth (Z0) and depth to top boundary (Zt) obtained from the plots, were used to calculate the Curie point depth ( CPD), which was later used for computation of geothermal gradient (GG) and heat flow (HF) of the area. The results computed shows that, Curie point depth, ranged from 8.61 to 36. 04 km with an average depth of 14.81 km, the geothermal gradient ranged between 16.09 to 70.81 °C /km, with an average value of 45.39 °C /km while the heat flowranged from 40.23 to 177.03 mWm-2 , with an average value of 113.49 mWm-2 . It observed from the contour maps that, the deepest Curie point depth is located southwestern part of the area, while the shallower and moderatedepths spreads across approximately 65% of the total research area. The geothermal and heat flow contourmaps showedgeothermal energy hot spotsaroundSouthwestern, Eastern and Northernparts areascorresponding to Otobi, Otukpo, Taraku, Nov, Moi Igbo, Igbor, Wannune, Lafia, Giringwe, Fiyayiand Eastern parts of Kastina- Ala. Thus, this hot spot areas is suitable for geothermal energy exploitation/explorationand harnessing this areas will address the power challenges across the states of this study and Nigeria at large.

Keywords : Airborne Magnetic Data, Curie Point Depth Isotherm, Geothermal Gradient, Heat Flow, and Geothermal Energy Potentiality.

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