Appraising Mahallat Geothermal Region using thermal surveying data accompanied by the geological, geochemical and gravity analyses

Sci Rep. 2021 Jun 9;11(1):12190. doi: 10.1038/s41598-021-90866-4.


Mahallat Geothermal Region, located in the central part of Iran, is known as one of the largest low-temperature geothermal fields. In this study, Mahallat geothermal resource has been evaluated based on integrated geological, geochemical and geophysical analyses. Gravity data revealed three major negative anomaly zones. Based on the geochemical analyses, quartz geothermometers are more reliable than others and confirmed that the reservoir is about 90 °C. Lithological properties of Jurassic layers and high sulphate content observed in geochemical data showed traces of the coal-rich layers on the hot fluids. Measured temperatures in 7 boreholes with the depths ranging from 50 to 100 m, have proposed that expected geothermal gradient will be about 81.5 °C/km. Among all drilled boreholes, the data coming from only one resulted in this almost reliable gradient. Other boreholes are clearly too shallow or affected by upflow or downflow of water along existing faults. Geological, geochemical, gravity and measurements of drilled boreholes suggested the existence of a shallow reservoir with an approximate temperature of 90 °C. Regarding gravity and observed faults, geothermal reservoir is elongated parallel to one of the main faults of the region with NE-SW strike.