Need, innovation, & benefit

In 2014, the International Geothermal Expert Group‘s forward looking report recommended ‘rebooting’ Australia’s geothermal industry. The report highlights a need for greater understanding of structural permeability at depth, to identify potential resources and de-risking geothermal projects ahead of drilling.

This project is the first investigation of the structural permeability of the Australian continent, achieved by applying advanced geophysical, geomechanical, and petrological techniques in a cross-disciplinary approach. This integration of datasets provided the basis for identifying structural permeability pathways, as well as helping to develop new methods for the detection of fractures beneath the Earth’s surface, and predicting how fluids will move through them.

The project will assist project development in engineered geothermal systems, in both sedimentary basins and crystalline basement regions. Better understanding of natural fracture distributions, attributes, and permeability will also provide data and insight for carbon capture and storage, unconventional gas resources, and groundwater resources.


Simon Holford, Rosalind King, Khalid Amrouch, Rowan Hansberry

Phd students

Drew Lubiniecki, Lachlan Richards, Natalie Debenham, Jonathan Berthiaume, Tayallen Velayatham