AZGS-AASG Awarded $18 M to Deploy and Populate National Geothermal Data System!

On 2 May 2010, the US Dept of Energy awarded AZGS, acting on behalf of the Association of American State Geologists (AASG), more than 18 million dollars to deploy the National Geothermal Data System and to populate it with state-specific geothermal and related data (Geothermal Technologies Program). 

The $18 million grant is the second largest award by DOE for geothermal energy out of federal stimulus funds.

The chief objective, is to “expand and enhance the National Geothermal Data System (NGDS) by creating a national, sustainable, distributed, interoperable network of state geological survey-based data providers that will develop, collect, serve, and maintain geothermal relevant data that operates as an integral compliant component of NGDS” (from DOE program description). 

AZGS is a partner in the Geothermal Data Coalition effort based at Boise State University to design and build the NGDS. Over the next 3 years, state-specific data relevant to geothermal exploration and development will be digitized and published online from nodes in all 50  states. The AZGS has been developing a collaborative data effort between AASG and the USGS for the past 3 years under the Geoscience Information Network (GIN). The data integration mechanisms in GIN will power the NGDS data discovery, access, and interoperability components.

Since May’s announcement, the pieces of this complex nation-wide geoscience puzzle have been falling into place fast.  The chronology below is drawn largely from Dr. Lee Allison’s Arizona Geology blog.

Coming soon

Aug 10-13 Live demonstration at USGS Community for Data Integration workshop in Denver.
Aug 17-18 Possible live demonstration, Western Regional Partnership, Principals Meeting, Albuquerque.
Sept 23-24 Workshop on building the National Geoinformatics Community, Denver.  
Oct 24-27     Booth at Geothermal Resources Council annual meeting, Sacramento.
Oct 30-Nov 3 Exhibit booth at GSA annual meeting, Denver plus one invited talk and submitting 1-2 volunteered talks.

Recent Events

20-21 July 2010 – The newly appointed Science Advisory Board met at AZGS offices in Tucson to review work plans of 33 state partners.

6 July 2010 – State Geologist Lee Allison noted in his blog that:
Arlene Anderson, DOE Geothermal Technologies Program Team Lead for Strategic Planning, Analysis and Geothermal Informatics, briefed attendees at the AASG annual meeting last week that the cooperative agreement between AASG and DOE  would expand the effort for collection of new data.

These new data should lead to derived geothermal gradients, heat flow, thermal conductivity, radioactive heat production numbers, and other geothermal relevant data as necessary in areas where such data are inadequate or lacking.  To support this initiative, DOE is providing an additional $4.058 million of ARRA funding to the existing project for a new total of $21.94 million.

With the addition of data resources from Maryland and Delaware, all 50 states are now represented in the project.

27 May 2010 – AZGS-run geothermal data project gets gonged at DOE Washington D.C. headquarters.
The giant gong sitting outside the office of the Assistant Secretary of Energy in Washington was rung yesterday for the AZGS-run geothermal data project… When something news-worthy happens in the DOE Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy program, the responsible team is supposed to assemble by the gong while the responsible team member strikes the gong with a large mallet hard enough so the entire office can hear it. Once that happens, the senior management and their staff emerge and the team member relays the news. Upon hearing the news, the communications director immediately issues a broadcast email to all 600.

The gong sounded -- only the second for the DOE Geothermal Program since the ritual began – to celebrate adoption of the National Geothermal Data System (and Geoscience Information Network - GIN) as a prototype for data integration in the world’s petroleum industry.

15 May 2010 -- Dr. Jay Nathwani, DOE’s Geothermal head,  called the National Geothermal Data System the "cornerstone" of U.S.  geothermal program for the next few years,  Dr. Nathwani was speaking at the plenary session of the 3-day long annual peer review of the 200 geothermal projects DOE is funding. There are 5 projects involved in NGDS, with combined budgets of $33 million.


AZGS Staff

Arizona Geological Survey
Tucson, AZ

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