Physical sciences, Earth sciences
Confronting climate change with technology
Geo-engineering, ways of modifying Earth's environment via technological tools to control global warming, is gaining steam in tackling the climate emergency. An EU initiative gathered researchers to contribute to the state of the art.
Scientists have been employing mechanics, mathematics, physics,
chemistry and geology to understand and shape our interaction with
Earth. They are intervening in the climate to bring down temperatures
through the discovery, development, production and use of sub-surface
earth resources, as well as the design and construction of earth works.
There is however a lack of scholarship and unproven research for this
relatively new science.
Thanks to the EU-funded project 'Geo-engineering exchanges between
Europe and Latin-America' (GEO-EXCEL), more than 40 PhD and postdoc
researchers and about 20 senior researchers from European from Latin
American universities joined forces to help advance geo-engineering
Research centred on earthquakes, landslides and flooding by taking
into account problematic soils and the influence of climate change on
To deal with these natural disasters, joint activities explored the
use of tools such as soil modelling and numerical studies, soil
dynamics, mechanics of unsaturated soils and soil-enhancement methods.
The knowledge transfer that was acquired through courses, seminars,
workshops and conferences helped develop and expand researchers'
know-how. This led to the exchange of novel techniques and
methodologies. The complementary expertise also enabled the development
of innovative experimental approaches in examining geological materials.
Project outcomes have already been put into practice on the
tunnelling infrastructure for a Barcelona underground railway. They can
also be applied to other structures, including dam, road and railway
Europe and Latin America teamed up to ensure excellent and
innovative research training as well as knowledge exchange opportunities
in geo-engineering. GEO-EXCEL has thus helped to ensure the
competitiveness of their respective geotechnical engineering sectors.
last modification: 2015-02-18 15:21:31