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Mapping the occurrence probability of geothermal manifestations at a national scale using MaxEnt

Original scientific paper

Journal of Sustainable Development of Energy, Water and Environment Systems
Volume 11, Issue 4, 1110464
DOI: https://doi.org/10.13044/j.sdewes.d11.0464
Javier García Reynaud1 , José Cáceres Coello2, Elisabeth Espinoza Canales1
1 National Pedagogical University, Tegucigalpa, Honduras
2 National Autonomous University of Honduras, Tegucigalpa, Honduras

Abstract

The geotectonic environment of Central America provides the region with a high potential for harnessing geothermal energy, however, the use of this energy source continues to be scarce due to a variety of factors, including limited access to exploration-oriented resources. It is therefore a priority to generate information that facilitates the preliminary stages of geothermal projects in order to achieve a greater contribution of available renewable sources to the energy matrix. In this study, the MaxEnt model was employed to predict locations with geothermal potential in Honduras. The model incorporated the coordinates of 177 surface manifestations and utilized various predictors, including the distribution of volcanoes, geological formations, faults, aquifers, and surface temperature. These predictors were disaggregated into 23 environmental variables. A map with an adequate prediction precision (Area Under the Receiver Operating Characteristic Curve = 0.868) was generated, showing that except for the eastern central region of Honduras, the country has a significant prevalence of surface with high and very high probability of occurrence of geothermal manifestations. Among the variables analyzed, the occurrence of geothermal manifestations can be primarily attributed to the proximity to volcanoes in the region.

Keywords: MaxEnt; Exploration, Geothermal, Honduras.

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