A machine capable of digging the world’s deepest hole could potentially unlock enough renewable energy to power the entire planet, according to its creators.
US-based Quaise Energy is developing a drilling rig that it hopes will reach 16km (10 miles) beneath the Earth’s surface in order to tap “inexhaustible clean energy” from geothermal heat in the crust.The total energy content of the heat stored underground exceeds our annual energy demand as a planet by a factor of a billion, Tapping into a fraction of that is more than enough to meet our energy needs for the foreseeable future.”The current record for the world’s deepest hole is the Kola borehole in the Arctic Circle, which measures 12.2km deep. It took the USSR more than two decades to drill but was abandoned following the collapse of the Soviet Union.The difficulties of drilling at those depths have meant tapping deep geothermal energy at scale has so far proved impossible.
After boring through softer rock closer to the surface, Quaise Energy replaces traditional drill bits with milimetre wave energy that melts and vaporizes the harder rocks it encounters.

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