Research Areas


Basic research in geosciences underpins knowledge of the terrestrial impacts and limitations of energy technologies and informs the nation’s strategy for mitigating these impacts in a safe and cost-effective manner. 

The geosciences program supports basic research in geology, geochemistry, and geophysics. Geochemical research emphasizes fundamental understanding of geochemical reactions in earth materials including aqueous solutions, minerals, and organic matter, with particular emphasis on colloidal and interfacial systems.  Geophysical research focuses on the physical/mechanical properties of earth materials; signal propagation and imaging in complex media; and the dynamics of fluids through porous materials and fracture networks.   Geological research is focused on the use and development of methods to investigate long-time scale geological processes with the highest possible accuracy at the finest possible time resolution, as well as on fundamental understanding of the occurrence, extraction, and depletion of critical energy materials.   

Application of x-­ray and neutron scattering using BES facilities plays a key role in of these research areas.  High-performance computational modeling, over a range of length and time scales, is also strongly emphasized.  Capital equipment funding is provided for items such as x-­ray and neutron scattering end stations at BES facilities for environmental samples and for augmenting experimental, field, and computational capabilities.

To obtain more information about this research area, please see our Core Research Area descriptions and the proceedings of our Principal Investigators' Meetings. To better understand how this research area fits within the Department of Energy's Office of Science, please refer to the Basic Energy Science's organization chart.pdf file (47KB) and budget request.

For more information about this research area, please contact Dr. James Rustad.

Last modified: 11/25/2015 8:09:01 AM