Geothermal Energy Questions and Answers – Origin and Distribution of Geothermal Energy

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This set of Advanced Geothermal Energy Questions and Answers focuses on “Origin and Distribution of Geothermal Energy”.

1. How is the heat inside earth restored?
a) Radioactive decay of elements
b) Sun restores the heat
c) Hot steam is pumped into earth
d) Cosmic rays
View Answer

Answer: a
Explanation: Earth’s heat is generated and restored by the radioactive decay of radioactive elements. These elements are found in the mantle and core. Pumping hot steam, sun’s heat and cosmic rays do not contribute to restoration of earth’s heat.
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2. What is the increase in temperature per kilometer starting from the crust?
a) 15 degree Celsius
b) 17 – 30 degree Celsius
c) 100 degree Celsius
d) 50 – 87 degree Celsius
View Answer

Answer: b
Explanation: The normal temperature gradient with respect to depth – increase in the temperature per kilometer is 17 – 30 degree Celsius. It is 50 – 87 in degree F.

3. What is the earth’s core made up of?
a) Gamma rays
b) Nitrogen
c) Iron
d) Gold
View Answer

Answer: c
Explanation: Earth’s core lies 4000 miles below the surface and consists of two layers. The core is made up of solid iron and is surrounded by molted iron.
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4. Which of the following surrounds the earth’s core?
a) Mt. Everest
b) Crust
c) Hydrogen
d) Mantle
View Answer

Answer: d
Explanation: The earth’s core is surrounded by mantle. It consists of rocks and magma. It is about 1800 miles thick starting from the core.

5. What is continental drift?
a) Tectonic plates pushing against each other
b) Continents being pulled due to gravitational force
c) Continents being pulled due to nuclear force
d) Tectonic plates expanding
View Answer

Answer: a
Explanation: The earth’s crust is not a uniform layer like the shell of an egg. It is made up of tectonic plates. These plates push against each other at the rate of 1 inch per year in a process called continental drift.
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6. Who initiated electricity generation from geothermal energy?
a) Indians
b) Italians
c) Americans
d) Africans
View Answer

Answer: b
Explanation: Hot springs were used for recreational and healing purposes in the ancient times. However, the converting geothermal energy to electricity is a relatively new concept. It was initiated by Italians in 1904.

7. Why did the first Geysers project in California fail?
a) Did not find geothermal site
b) Insufficient steam
c) Corrosion of equipment
d) Availability of pure steam
View Answer

Answer: c
Explanation: The first Geysers project in California failed because of impurities in the steam at the geothermal site. These impurities corroded and abraded the pipes and turbines of the day.
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8. Which of the following countries hosts the largest geothermal field?
a) Iran
b) Italy
c) Australia
d) United States
View Answer

Answer: d
Explanation: Geothermal energy is now used in more than 20 countries across the globe. The largest geothermal field is hosted by United States. It is known as “The Geysers” and is located in California. It is spread over 117 km2 and consists of 22 power plants with a capacity of 1.5GW.

9. Which of the following is used to locate a geothermal site?
a) Drilling wells
b) Reflection
c) Seismograph
d) SONAR
View Answer

Answer: a
Explanation: Drilling wells to measure underground temperature is a well known method to locate geothermal sites. Reflection, seismograph and SONAR are not used to locate geothermal site. In fact, seismograph detects earthquakes.
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10. Which of the following is the most probably location of geothermal site?
a) Grasslands
b) Volcanoes
c) Coasts
d) River beds
View Answer

Answer: b
Explanation: Most active geothermal sites are located along major plate boundaries where earthquakes and volcanoes are concentrated. Coasts, grasslands and river beds hardly experience any volcanoes so they are not the most probable location.

11. Most of the geothermal activity occurs at ______
a) Ring of water
b) Mt. Everest
c) Ring of fire
d) Amsterdam
View Answer

Answer: c
Explanation: Most of the geothermal activity occurs in an area called “Ring of Fire”. It rims the Pacific Ocean and is bounded by Japan, the Philippines, the Aleutian Islands, North America, Central America and South America.

12. Which of the following is the major drawback of geothermal energy?
a) Low initial cost
b) Low carbon dioxide production
c) High carbon dioxide production
d) Extremely location specific
View Answer

Answer: d
Explanation: The major drawback of geothermal energy is its dependence on the geothermal site. In fact, it is probably the most location specific energy source. Also, the power plants are accused of causing mini tremors in the surrounding areas.

13. Geothermal energy has high initial cost.
a) True
b) False
View Answer

Answer: a
Explanation: Geothermal has a high initial cost because of the costs required to locate the geothermal site. The cost of admission also includes construction of the power plant at the site.

14. Which of the following gases is released by a geothermal site and power plant?
a) Carbon dioxide
b) Sulphur
c) Iron
d) Steel
View Answer

Answer: b
Explanation: Geothermal sites and power plants are accused of releasing sulphur and hydrogen sulfide. It has low carbon dioxide emissions. Iron and steel are not gases.

15. Lord Kelvin invented the heat pump.
a) True
b) False
View Answer

Answer: a
Explanation: Lord Kelvin invented the heat pump in 1853. Heinrich Zoelly had patented the idea to draw heat from ground in 192. The heat pump was practically implemented in the late 1940s.

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Manish Bhojasia - Founder & CTO at Sanfoundry
Manish Bhojasia, a technology veteran with 20+ years @ Cisco & Wipro, is Founder and CTO at Sanfoundry. He is Linux Kernel Developer & SAN Architect and is passionate about competency developments in these areas. He lives in Bangalore and delivers focused training sessions to IT professionals in Linux Kernel, Linux Debugging, Linux Device Drivers, Linux Networking, Linux Storage, Advanced C Programming, SAN Storage Technologies, SCSI Internals & Storage Protocols such as iSCSI & Fiber Channel. Stay connected with him @ LinkedIn | Youtube | Instagram | Facebook | Twitter