Header Return to Main Conference Page
Return to Home Page


To view the presenter's presentation, click on their talk title.

Dr. Jefferson W. Tester

Dr. Tester is the Croll Professor of Sustainable Energy Systems in the School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at Cornell University and Associate Director for Energy in the Cornell Center for a Sustainable Future. Prior to his appointment at Cornell in 2009, Dr. Tester was the H.P. Meissner Professor of Chemical Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. His other appointments have included Director of MIT's Energy Laboratory (1989-2001), Director of MIT’s School of Chemical Engineering Practice (1980-1989) and a group leader in the Geothermal Engineering Group at Los Alamos National Laboratory (1974-1980). His research on renewable and conventional energy extraction and conversion and environmental control technologies has resulted in over 200 scientific publications and 10 co-authored books. Professor Tester is a fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry and currently a member of the IPCC’s Working Group on Renewable Energy Sources, and advisory boards of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (chair), the American Council of Renewable Energy, Idaho National Laboratory, and Los Alamos National Laboratory.

Geothermal co-generation opportunities in New York

For geothermal to have a national impact as a major energy supplier in the U.S., deployment must eventually utilize lower grade hydrothermal or Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) resources. In these locations the costs of drilling as a function of depth will limit produced fluids to lower temperatures. This limitation favors applications for direct use and/or co-generation of electricity and heat. The Northeast region of the US where geothermal gradients are low and annual heating loads are substantial are of special interest. The paper provides the rationale for selecting Cornell University’s Ithaca campus in upper New York State as a test site for commercial-scale geothermal development in the eastern U.S. At Cornell, geothermal heat would be used in an advanced co-generation system in conjunction with other renewable resources such as biomass and lake source cooling along with deployment of aggressive on-campus energy efficiency measures to substantially lower and eventually eliminate carbon emissions. A site development plan outlined in the paper characterizes the thermodynamic, environmental, and economic advantages that EGS could provide for direct heating and co-generation as a replacement to the coal and natural gas fired systems currently in use at Cornell.