Section 4: Geothermics & Information Systems

Section's Staff, December 2015


In the field of Geothermics, section 4 carries out experimental and numerical investigations about the transport of fluid, mass and heat in the earth crust.  In the foreground stands the investigation of underground temperatures and geothermal resources in Germany, as well as the development of numerical procedures for the simulation of thermical-hydraulical-mechanical-chemical (TMHC) coupled processes.

LIAG's Germany-wide Geophysics Information System has been developed up to 2005 by the institute. Since then, it was further maintained and extended in co-operation with the other LIAG sections. The system is an infrastructural basis of the research project of LIAG and its partners. It was integrated into a Europe-wide portal for geophysical data by the EU project GEOMIND (Geophysical Multilingual Internet-Driven Information Service).

On the basis of the Geophysics Information System, the Geothermal Information System for Germany (GeotIS) was constructed.  

Social Relevance

The great potential in Geothermal Energy which also exists in a country without active volcanism like Germany is, because of rising energy prices and growing environmental impact by the use of fossil energy sources, increasingly in the public consciousness. However, the wide application of geothermal energy for heating purposes or the production of electric energy needs a dependable decision support for the plannung of geothermal installations.

In particular, this support has to provide detailed informations about the geothermal and geologic situation at geographic locations. For this purpose, the German Geothermal Information System (GeotIS) has been developed by LIAG and its partners. GeotIS offers its users information about deep underground areas in Germany which are possibly suitable for a geothermal use. GeotIS can be seen as the digital variant of a geothermal atlas which is independent of scales and always available in its most actual edition. Geoscientific base data, as well as actual knowledge or results, are provided and continuously maintained. The aim of GeotIS is the offering of decision support for the projection of new geothermal installations, in particular the risk minimisation in finding geothermal resources and drilling locations. The GeotIS data basis allows the quantification of this, as wished by private investors, insurances and public financiers.

The coming years will be used to extend GeotIS to more German regions of interest, and to make its services available to an even broader user's circle in user-friendly way.

Coal Fires yearly destroy considerable energy resources and stress climate and environment by releasing large amounts of aerial pollutants, in particular the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide. In the surface-near black coal beds of Northern China, this problem is especially pressing. By its participation in a bilateral research co-operation, LIAG contributes to the understanding and finally to the containment and prevention of coal fires.

Information systems, like LIAG's Geophysics Information System, store and supply information and are essentials basements for the modern information and communication society. They are used, as instruments for the support of decisions, at all levels of politics, management, economy, science, and from the citizens.