Hydrogen chloride (HCl) is a known component of some volcanic gases and volcanic-related hydrothermal systems. It has recently been discovered in superheated steam in exploited geothermal systems, usually as a result of HCl-induced corrosion of well casing and steam gathering systems. Evaluation of four geothermal systems (Tatun, Taiwan; Krafla, Iceland; Larderello, Italy and The Geysers, USA) which produce CI-bearing steam provides evidence for the presence of Cl as HCl and the natural reservoir conditions which can produce HCl-bearing steam. Theoretical calculations defining the physical and chemical conditions of the reservoir liquid which can produce HCl-bearing steam are presented. The main factors are pH, temperature and Cl concentration. Lower pH, higher temperature and higher chlorinity allow more HCl to be volatilized with steam. In order to reach the surface in steam, the HCl cannot contact liquid water in which it is more soluble, essentially limiting transport to superheated steam. Temperature, pH and Cl concentration of reservoir liquids in each of the geothermal systems evaluated combine differently to produce HCl-bearing steam. ?? 1989.
Additional publication details
Origin and transport of chloride in superheated geothermal steam