Derek Elsworth Lecture
18 March 2020
- General Public, Faculty/Staff, Students, Alumni
Subsurface Energy Choices: challenges and opportunities
A public lecture by Professor Derek Elsworth, Center for Geomechanics, Geofluids, and Geohazards, Pennsylvania State University and Robert and Maude Gledden Short Stay Visiting Fellow.
Energy-intensive economies of the industrialized world and the burgeoning energy-hungry economies of aspiring members to this club demand access to plentiful and dependable energy. A major global challenge is to satisfy this growing energy demand - in the improbable face of peak oil - while simultaneously balancing the needs of environment and economy.
One exciting path involves the significant but exciting challenges related to the increased utilization of low-carbon and no-carbon fuels. These include the development of methods for the safe sequestration of carbon dioxide, the effective development of non-hydrothermal geothermal resources and in the recovery of low-carbon fuels such as natural gas from challenging subsurface environments such as gas shales. This lecture will explore the significant role subsurface science may play in brokering such a technological and societal transition.
Derek Elsworth is a Professor in the Departments of Energy and Mineral Engineering and of Geosciences and the Center for Geomechanics, Geofluids, and Geohazards. His interests are in the areas of computational mechanics, rock mechanics, and in the mechanical and transport characteristics of fractured rocks, with application to geothermal energy, the deep geological sequestration of radioactive wastes and of CO2, unconventional hydrocarbons including coal-gas, tight-gas-shales and hydrates, and instability and eruption dynamics of volcanoes.