Seequent's Leapfrog software helped get Hawaii's Puna geothermal plant back on line quickly after the 2018 eruption of Kilauea vocano.
Navigating erupting volcanoes is all part of the job for Simon Webbison at Ormat Technologies, a world-leading geothermal company that relies on data-driven insights to better understand the complex geology of renewable resources.
Geothermal energy is an integral part of the transition towards net zero with a much lower environmental impact than conventional sources, such as fuel or oil.
And while unlocking sustainable energy sources from the world’s geothermal hot spots can be complex, Ormat’s expertise is helping bring reliable, sustainable energy options around the globe.
“Our work is challenging, but highly rewarding and that’s what motivates our world-class team and me personally,”
says Simon Webbison, Vice President of Exploration and Resource Management at Ormat Technologies Inc.
Hawaii’s Kīlauea volcanic eruption, in May 2018, buried roadways and forced the evacuation of two thousand residents.
Subsequent lava flow caused Ormat’s Puna Geothermal Venture 38-megawatt (MW) power plant, located in Hawaii’s East Rift Zone, to temporarily shut down.
“We had to turn the power plant off for a period to make things safe, reducing the amount of renewable energy feeding the electricity grid, resulting in more diesel generation and higher power prices for consumers,” explains Simon.
“Seequent’s Leapfrog Geothermal gave us a much better understanding of the characteristics and behaviour of the subsurface both during the eruption and following it, ultimately helping to get the facility back up and running as quickly as possible.”