Tracking an Energy Elephant: Science and Engineering Challenges for Unlocking the Geothermal Potential of Sedimentary Basins
An NSF Workshop
Salt Lake City, Utah
Please consider applying to attend this NSF-Sponsored workshop to explore the science and engineering challenges in tapping the geothermal heat stored within deep sedimentary basins for economic power generation. We plan to develop a list of basic research priorities and an overall strategic plan for overcoming these challenges. This workshop is one of a small number of workshops on various sources of sustainable energy that are being funded by NSF to serve as a guide to funding priorities in the upcoming NSF SEES program (Science, Engineering and Education for Sustainability). The workshop will be able to support approximately 30 applications for full expenses. A diversity of participants are sought from across the wide range of science and engineering disciplines that are needed to address this complex issue.
Presently, less than 1% of the energy grid in the United States derives from geothermal systems. The total amount of heat energy generated within the Earth, however, is enormous, and represents a sustainable source well beyond current or projected domestic energy needs. Sedimentary basins have the water, heat, and permeability needed to produce this energy on the gigawatt scales needed to impact the current level of energy consumption and have the important attribute of being well dispersed about the continent. Tapping this energy source requires a better understanding of natural and engineered geothermal systems within sedimentary basins. This workshop will focus on identifying the science and engineering research challenges that need to be surmounted in order to make this energy source a practical reality. We will produce a report outlining a research strategy that will be used to guide research funding though the SEES program, and will be publically available to other interested parties.
If you have interest in adding your voice to this discussion, and potentially influencing future research and funding directions in geothermal power, please do consider joining us in Salt Lake. The workshop is by invitation and application only, but accepted participants will be covered for expenses.
Invitations from the applications will be sent starting September 26. For more information and to apply, go to http://www.SedHeat.org. Also, feel free to contact a convener
John Holbrook, Texas Christian University
Walter Snyder, Boise State University
Joseph Moore, University of Utah
Charles Fairhurst, University of Minnesota
Herbert Einstein, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Karin A. Block, City College of New York