Energy and Mineral Resources

GGE faculty are engaged in research pertaining to exploration and production of energy resources including petroleum, natural gas, and geothermal resources. Research activities include management of water resources associated with the production of hydrocarbons and investigations of rock properties that affect hydraulic fracturing performance and results. Research activities also address underground storage of hydrocarbons and hydrogen energy resources in salt caverns.

  • Hydrocarbon resource evaluations
    -- Carbon dioxide sequestration in geologic formations
    -- Methane hydrate-bearing sediments
  • Reservoir rock characterization
    -- Lithologic controls on stress-strain and creep
    -- Petrophysical and geomechanical characterization
    -- Reservoir geo-modeling using geostatistics
    -- Production data history matching in reservoir simulation
  • Geothermal resources
    -- Evaluation of geothermal anomalies in south central South Dakota
    -- Enhanced geothermal system
  • Water management
    -- Monitoring subsidence induced by fluid extraction using Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR)
    -- Source and migration of stray gas in shallow aquifers
    -- Wastewater-injection-induced seismicity

    -- Natural attenuation of hydraulic fracturing additives in groundwater

  • Underground energy storage
    -- Salt cavern monitoring with InSAR and downhole surveys
    -- Modeling salt cavern creep
    -- Storage of Hydrocarbons and H2 in salt caverns
    -- Energy transition

Faculty Expertise

  • Kurt Katzenstein
    InSAR, Geohazards, Geomechanics
  • Liangping Li
    Groundwater, Geostatistics, Data assimilation
  • Tim Masterlark 
    Underground energy storage, Salt caverns, Energy transition, Hydrofracking, Geothermal models and EGS, Monitoring with InSAR, Injection and induced seismicity
  • Larry Stetler
    Geological Engineering, Site characterization, 3D imaging
  • Nuri Uzunlar
    Field geology, Energy resources (petroleum and geothermal), Economic geology
  • Zhi Ye
    Geo-Energy and storage, Geothermal and EGS, Unconventional petroleum resources

Emeritus Faculty

  • James Fox
    Stratigraphy, Sedimentology, Petroleum geology
  • Colin Paterson
    Economic geology, Mineral resources, Petrology
  • William Roggenthen
    Engineering geophysics
  • Foster Sawyer
    Groundwater, Petroleum, Sedimentation


Research Focus Areas