Raser Technologies (RZ) Hatch Geothermal Plant A Disappointment So Far

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12:27:35 pm on September 18, 2009

Raser Technologies (RZ) has always been a company looking for a good press release or PR opportunity.  From the ceremonial ribbon cutting announcements at its Utah plant to the Hybrid Hummer, the press releases continue to flow.  But is the hype justified at least in terms of its geothermal operations?  Maybe not.

According to an article in the Salt Lake Tribune, the company is buying almost as much power (4MW) to keep the lights on at the plant as it produces in geothermal energy (5MW) for Anaheim.  The problem is that the plant isn’t operating at full capacity of 14MW because it isn’t producing geothermal water that’s hot enough.  The water is hotter than the 180 degrees that Raser said would be sufficient, but theory and reality may be catching up to them.  A Raser spokesman acknowledged the company has run into some challenges and that they are working on them.  They hope the reworked wells will produce hotter water temperatures and begin producing at full capacity by the end of the year.. we’ll be watching.

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