Soda Lake Geothermal Area

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Soda Lake Geothermal Area

Area Overview

Geothermal Area Profile

Location: Nevada

Exploration Region: Northwest Basin and Range Geothermal Region

GEA Development Phase: Operational"Operational" is not in the list of possible values (Phase I - Resource Procurement and Identification, Phase II - Resource Exploration and Confirmation, Phase III - Permitting and Initial Development, Phase IV - Resource Production and Power Plant Construction) for this property.

Coordinates: 39.56666667°, -118.85°

Resource Estimate

Mean Reservoir Temp: 179°C452.15 K
354.2 °F
813.87 °R

Estimated Reservoir Volume: 8.84 km³8,840,000,000 m³
2.121 mi³
312,181,653,813.64 ft³
11,562,283,471.96 yd³
8,840,000,000,000 L

Mean Capacity: 26.1 MW26,100 kW
26,100,000 W
26,100,000,000 mW
0.0261 GW
2.61e-5 TW

USGS Mean Reservoir Temp: 205°C478.15 K
401 °F
860.67 °R

USGS Estimated Reservoir Volume: 5 km³ [3]

USGS Mean Capacity: 48 MW [3]

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History and Infrastructure

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Regulatory and Environmental Issues

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Exploration History

First Discovery Well

Completion Date:

Well Name:



Initial Flow Rate:
  • "ad" is not declared as a valid unit of measurement for this property.
  • The given value was not understood.

Flow Test Comment:

Initial Temperature:

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Well Field Description

Well Field Information

Development Area:

Number of Production Wells:

Number of Injection Wells:

Number of Replacement Wells:

Average Temperature of Geofluid: 180°C453.15 K
356 °F
815.67 °R

Sanyal Classification (Wellhead): Low Temperature

Reservoir Temp (Geothermometry):

Reservoir Temp (Measured): 210°C483.15 K
410 °F
869.67 °R

Sanyal Classification (Reservoir): Moderate Temperature

Depth to Top of Reservoir: 305 m0.305 km
0.19 mi
1,000.656 ft
333.551 yd

Depth to Bottom of Reservoir: 1219 m1.219 km
0.757 mi
3,999.344 ft
1,333.111 yd

Average Depth to Reservoir: 762 m0.762 km
0.473 mi
2,500 ft
833.331 yd

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Geology of the Area

Geologic Setting

Tectonic Setting: Extensional Tectonics

Controlling Structure:

Topographic Features: Horst and Graben

Brophy Model: Type E: Extensional Tectonic, Fault-Controlled Resource

Moeck-Beardsmore Play Type: CV-3: Extensional Domain

Geologic Features

Modern Geothermal Features: [9]

Relict Geothermal Features: Hydrothermal Alteration [10]

Volcanic Age: Quaternary [11]

Host Rock Age: Miocene

Host Rock Lithology: pumice tuff

Cap Rock Age:

Cap Rock Lithology:

The Soda Lake geothermal area is located in the Carson Desert in the western part of the Carson Sink basin in west-central Nevada. The field is centered ~3.5 km NNE of the Soda Lake maar, from which it takes its name. Dense drilling at the Soda Lake field permits good correlation of stratigraphy in the subsurface below the feature-poor Carson Desert. Unconsolidated sediments extend more than 1000 m below surface in this part of the basin. The upper few hundred meters are composed of non-marine fluvial and lacustrine sediments derived from the surrounding highlands. The basin fill becomes increasingly uniform and volcanic-sourced with depth. In many wells this deeper volcaniclastic fill may grade into a lapilli lithic tuff of similar composition. At variable distances below the producing tuff, the unconsolidated fill is intruded by a plug-like trachytic basalt body. The basalt overlies fine-grained, organic-rich lacustrine sediments and a thick package of altered basalts. The Soda Lake geothermal field falls within a NNE—SSW surface trend defined by the Soda Lake maar, the Upsal Hogback cinder cones, and hot ground and silicified sands that overlie the field itself. Drilling and seismic data have confirmed that the field lies within a narrow, NNE-trending graben. The faults that define this structure likely control both upwelling hot fluids and these small eruptive centers – both the surface-breaching volcanic centers and the previously unrecognized buried basaltic plug at the geothermal field.[8]

Geofluid Geochemistry


Salinity (low): 4000 [12]

Salinity (high): 6000 [13]

Salinity (average): 5000

Brine Constituents:

Water Resistivity:

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NEPA-Related Analyses (4)

Below is a list of NEPA-related analyses that have been conducted in the area - and logged on OpenEI. To add an additional NEPA-related analysis, see the NEPA Database.


Document # Analysis
Applicant Application
DOI-BLM-NV-C010-2009-0018-EA EA Magma Energy 9 April 2009 30 July 2009 Bureau of Land Management Geothermal/Well Field Production Wells
DOI-BLM-NV-C010-2009-0051-CX CX Global Magma Energy Group 3 September 2009 30 September 2009 BLM Nevada State Office Geothermal/Exploration Magnetotelluric Techniques
DOI-BLM-NV-C010-2010-0008-EA EA Magma Energy 13 October 2009 1 August 2010 BLM Geothermal/Exploration Downhole Techniques
Drilling Techniques
Exploration Drilling
Well Testing Techniques
DOI-BLM-NV-C010-2010-0052-CX CX Magma Energy 15 July 2010 30 August 2010 BLM Nevada State Office Geothermal/Exploration Drilling Techniques
Thermal Gradient Holes

Exploration Activities (0)

Below is a list of Exploration that have been conducted in the area - and cataloged on OpenEI. Add.png Add a new Exploration Activity

No exploration activities listed on OpenEI.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Geohydrology, aqueous geochemistry, and thermal regime of the soda lakes and upsal hogback geothermal systems, Churchill county, Nevada (USGS)
  2. Geothermex Inc.. 2004. New Geothermal Site Identification and Qualification. Richmond, CA: California Energy Commission. Report No.: P500-04-051. Contract No.: 500-04-051.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 U.S. Geological Survey. 2008. Assessment of Moderate- and High-Temperature Geothermal Resources of the United States. USA: U.S. Geological Survey. Report No.: Fact Sheet 2008-3082.
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List of existing Geothermal Resource Areas.

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