New research initiative on geospatial analysis and funding opportunity

U.S. Geothermal Resources Map, DOE, National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)
Alexander Richter 9 Mar 2016

The U.S. Department of Energy announces a new Subsurface Technology and Engineering Research, Development and Demonstration (SubTER) initiative and a $9 million funding opportunity on improving knowledge in geothermal exploration.

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has formed a first-of-its-kind team: the Subsurface Technology and Engineering Research, Development, and Demonstration (SubTER) initiative. SubTER aims to improve energy security, environmental protection, and economic and social benefits by addressing issues including: increasing U.S. electricity production from geothermal reservoirs; safe storage of carbon dioxide (CO2) to meet greenhouse gas emissions reductions targets; and drinking water protection.

One exciting example of how SubTER is making a difference is through a project DOE is funding with the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL), the Oklahoma Geologic Survey, and five national laboratories to harness the power of high performance supercomputing with the latest in geospatial analysis.

What’s the goal? The NETL project estimates the probability of induced seismicity due to human underground activity by analyzing large data sets, or Big Data, to reveal patterns, trends, and associations. This new approach will help facilitate future development of clean geothermal resources and expand our scientific understanding of Earth’s subsurface. The results of this big data project will be made publicly available on DOE’s Energy Data eXchange.

In addition, DOE has recently released a funding opportunity announcement (FAO) of approximately $9 million to continue to address subsurface research, development, and demonstration challenges. The funding aims to advance technologies in carbon storage as well as technologies employed to identify and validate subsurface signals used to progress geothermal exploration.

For the geothermal part, the purpose of this FOA is to competitively solicit and award research and development (R&D) projects that will identify and validate new subsurface signals to characterize and image the subsurface advancing the state of knowledge in geothermal exploration. Funding Opportunity Announcement Details

Source: DOE