Aberdeen’s famous granite could be used to create a new geothermal energy plant.
Scottish Enterprise has funded a major study into establishing if a test plant could be built between Aberdeen and Peterhead, which is expected to be undertaken by March next year.
The geothermal plant, which would use high temperatures found miles underground to generate electricity, could form part of the Energetica project designed to position Aberdeen City and Shire’s as a global energy hub by creating a 30-mile corridor between Aberdeen and Peterhead of energy technology companies, housing and leisure facilities.
The earth’s temperature rises by around 150C four miles underground but this can increase to 210C in areas where there is granite, making ideal conditions to produce geothermal energy.
Scientists have identified locations near Peterhead, Inverurie and Stonehaven where such conditions may exist.
Energetica project director Sara Budge says "As part of our quest to make Energetica a world-class, all-energy destination, we are exploring various avenues for generating renewable energy in the corridor which stretches north from the Bridge of Don up to Peterhead and west to Aberdeen Airport.
"Geothermal is one source we are considering. We have just issued a tender to appoint an appropriate organisation to undertake a feasibility study into the potential for geothermal heat generation within Energetica but also in other locations across Aberdeenshire."