Nicaragua - Electricity Generation

In Nicaragua geothermal studies started in the 60’s, and an impressive geothermal potential of the country has been estimated (about 1,100 MWe), but only a minimal part have been exploited till now, covering approximately 10% of the national electricity consumption. There are five geothermal areas, with power plants only in two of them (Momotombo, 77 MWe and San Jacinto-Tizate 82 MWe) (Ruiz Cordero, 2015).

Development since WGC2010: 2x36 MWe units at San Jacinto-Tizate.

Installed capacity 159 MWe
Geothermal Electricity 492 GWh/y 

Source:  Ruggero Bertani, Geothermal Power Generation in the World 2010-2014 Update Report


Installed geothermal generating capacity (December 2009) in MW

Momotombo77
San Jacinto-Tizate10
Total87

Despite of the impressive geothermal potential of the country, only a minor addition has been realized since 2005, not in the traditional exploited field of Momotombo, (three units since 1983, with an installed capacity of 77 MW, but a current generation of only 28 MW, operated by Ormat), but in San Jacinto-Tizate area, from Polaris, where 10 MW has been placed on line in 2007, with 2x5 MW back pressure units. A project for an expansion to 34 MW and subsequently 72 MW at is on-going.

An exploration program at El Hoyo-Monte Galan and Managua-Chiltepe, for two 44 MW projects each has been launched jointly by Enel and LaGeo; the deep exploration is expected to be completed by year 2009. In the first field a shallow well showed high temperature (220°C), even if with low permeability. In the second area, a first slim hole was unsatisfactory, with very low temperature (80°C).

Taken from Ruggero Bertani’s paper, " Geothermal Power Generation in the World 2005–2010 Update Report ", published in Proceedings of the World Geothermal Congress 2010, Bali, Indonesia, 25-29 April 2010.