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Detailed ground radiometric survey covering 400m x 400m of part of Lere sheet, Kaduna state, Nigeria was carried out. The research was aimed at determining the radiogenic heat production and geothermal potentiality around Rafin Rewa, Dan Alhaji the study area. The number of points used for the data collection were 400 on 20 profiles spaced 20m apart. A map of radioactive heat production was produced and anomalous areas were detected from the map. It was observed that high anomalies were recorded on the western part of the study area with coordinates 80 30′ 54″N and 10025′34″E. The results of the study showed a range of radioactive heat production varying from 0.155μWm-3 to 154.54 μWm-3 with mean value of 31.993 μWm-3. This is higher than the Global mean value of Radioactive Heat Production which is 2.8 μWm-3. This implies that most of the area is suitable for geothermal exploration with the best drilling points on the western part of the area. Comparing the radioactive heat production map with the contour map of individual radioelements maps and ternary image map, this study has shown that Uranium and Thorium are the major contributing elements to the radioactive heat of the study area.
1.1 GENERAL OVERVIEW
Geophysical methods play a great role in exploration of geothermal energy.
Exploitation of geothermal resources for energy is common practice in areas where
geothermal gradients are high, such as tectonically active regions and in volcanic
areas e.g., Iceland and Italy (Yarima et al., 2013, Pasquale and vedoya, 2000). As
demand for sustainable energy increases, and the technology to harness it improves,
geothermal resources in relatively quiet regions prove increasingly viable.
Geophysical surveys are targeted at measuring the geophysical parameters of the
geothermal systems either directly from the surface of the earth or from shallow
depth. Recent works by Garba et al., (2012) have shown great potential for
geothermal heat flow in the Rafin Rewa. Hence, this study has been initiated to
gain insight into the geothermal prospect of the study area at Rafin Rewa, Dan-
Alhaji village using radiometric method. A geothermal system consists of the
i. A heat source,
ii. A reservoir/rock,
iii. A fluid which carries and transfers heat and a recharge area, Yasuka et al.,
By far the biggest source of crustal heat is radioactive isotopic decay which, depending
upon geographic location, is estimated to generate up to 98% global heat, (Slagstad,
2008). Other contributions, such as cosmic neutrino interaction with the Earth’s mass
(Hamza and Beck, 1972) and gravitational distortion (Beardsmore and Cull, 2001), are
likely to be very small indeed. The decay of the unstable isotopes of uranium (238U and,
to a far lesser extent, 235U), thorium (232Th) and potassium (40K) provide the largest
internal source of crustal heat that is geologically significant today (Brown and Mussett
1993). Using the heat production constant values, assumed or measured density (ρ,
kg/m3) and measured ppm concentrations of uranium (CU) and thorium (CTh), and wt.%
concentration of potassium (CK), the heat production rate (HPR) can be determined
HPR (μW/m3) = 10-5ρ (9.52CU + 2.56CTh + 3.48CK) (Rybach, 1988. Saleem,
The heat source is due to either radioactivity or active tectonics which represent major
zones of magmatic matter that is cooling (Uysal, 2009).
Radiogenic heat values in the crust in conjunction with heat flow density data, contribute to
our knowledge of the structure of the Earth’s lithosphere ( Taylor and Mcleriannan, 1985;
Beardsmore and Cull, 2001; Jaupart and Mareschal, 2003) and heat variation plays an
important role in crustal processes (Bea and Zinger., 2003; Sanderson et al., 2004). More
practically, areas of high heat production are increasingly being identified as possible
targets for hot, dry rock geothermal resources (Hasterok and Chapman, 2011). To this end,
radiogenic heat values have been calculated from a dataset of 400 points measured.
Geothermal energy is created by the heat of the earth. It generates reliable heat and emits
almost no greenhouse gases. It is a reliable source of power that can reduce the need for
imported fuels for power generation. It is also renewable because it is based on practically
limitless resources. In addition, geothermal energy has significant environmental
advantages because geothermal emissions contain almost non chemical pollutants or waste.
This is especially true for geothermal energy representing a promising option for the
environmentally sound and secure generation of heat and electricity. They consist mostly of
water, which is re- injected underground. The Earth’s internal heat is derived from several
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