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August 2008 Issue
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Geothermal energy support heats up

The University of Adelaide has welcomed an announcement by the State Government offering further support to fast-track research and development of geothermal technology.

The State Government has announced a further $250,000 towards geothermal energy research. This follows $250,000 provided last year to help develop an international research facility into geothermal (also known as "hot rock") energy within the University, working with Geoscience Australia, the CSIRO, and university research members of the Australian Geothermal Energy Group.

The University has signed an agreement with the State Government to help accelerate R&D of geothermal resources in South Australia.

Professor Richard Russell, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research Operations), said the announcement was "another welcome step forward in ensuring that our expertise in geothermal research is recognised throughout Australia and internationally, with great potential benefits for industry and the community".

"The University of Adelaide's researchers have worked extensively with the geothermal industry and are keen to ensure that this State remains at the forefront of research and development in this area. The State Government's support is vital to making that happen," Professor Russell said.

Geothermal technology offers renewable and CO2 emissions-free electricity generation.

"Our work will become vital in helping the State to meet its strategic targets, both in terms of energy provision and by assisting the State to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions," Professor Russell said.

Geothermal research will form a significant part of the University of Adelaide's recently announced Institute for Mineral and Energy Resources. The Institute aims to become the premier research and educational facility for the mining and energy sectors in the Asia-Pacific region.

Geothermal research projects are currently being undertaken in the Australian School of Petroleum, the School of Earth and Environmental Sciences and in the Schools of Mechanical and Chemical Engineering at the University of Adelaide.

Story by David Ellis

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