WAGCOE is leading geothermal energy research in Western Australia.
Western Australian Geothermal Centre of Excellence
The Western Australian Geothermal Centre of Excellence (WAGCOE) is underpinning geothermal research and technologies to advance towards sustainable, zero-emission cities powered by geothermal energy.
28 September 2009 | Updated 15 January 2013
Based at the Australian Resources Research Centre (ARRC) in Perth, WAGCOE is a joint venture partnership between CSIRO, The University of Western Australia (UWA) and Curtin University of Technology.
It was established in February 2008 with funding support of A$2.3 million from the Government of Western Australia.
WAGCOE brings together researchers, industry, investors and government agencies to make the direct use of geothermal energy possible. Its vision is to create sustainable, zero-emission, geothermal cities, providing desalinated water, air conditioning and power to modern cities through geothermal energy.
By developing local solutions to revolutionise energy development in Western Australia, the Centre plans to develop, demonstrate and deploy zero-emissions concepts to address the challenge of climate change and develop a reliable source of renewable energy to help mitigate the global crisis in resources and the environment.
The WAGCOE's mission is to:
provide excellence in geological understanding and exploitation of geothermal fields
foster a capable work force for the geothermal industry by providing world class training in geothermal energy systems
promote the development of geothermal cities.
The WAGCOE aims to deliver modern, zero-emissions concepts and contribute to making alternative energy competitive locally and globally.
The research objectives of the Centre are to:
assess the geological and geophysical data from the Perth Basin to identify geothermal targets and construct a three-dimensional (3D) geological model
develop Australia's first commercial geothermal powered heating and air-conditioning units
identify deeper and hotter geothermal sources (both in hot sedimentary aquifers and hot dry rocks)
incorporate geothermal power into existing desalination processes and improve their efficiencies
examine the chemical and mechanical factors influencing the management of deep permeability in geothermal systems
build local expertise and collaboration with other efforts in Australia and worldwide
CSIRO and WAGCOE
CSIRO will play a key role in the Geothermal Centre of Excellence. With a strong background in research and technology development for the resources industry, CSIRO will apply relevant expertise to the geothermal sector.
Capabilities in numerical modelling, geophysics, geology, geochemistry and engineering will help address the objectives of the Centre's research programs.
Research conducted through the Centre is part of CSIRO's portfolio of geothermal research, which also includes a number of projects in Hot Dry Rocks.
The geothermal initiatives of WAGCOE are multi-disciplinary and are being driven by extensive national and global collaborations ensuring that the research, technology and its many applications bring together the world's best minds to produce leading edge solutions.
WAGCOE engages externally with the expertise of iVEC, the John de Laeter Centre for Mass Spectroscopy and interested industry partners and stakeholders.
Globally, WAGCOE collaborates with:
BRGM (Geological Society of France)
New Zealand Geothermal Insitute
the Institute of Geothermal Resource Management.
WAGCOE is working closely with geothermal lease holders, city planners, companies developing geothermal technologies and a host of additional stakeholders to advance the geothermal industry and its level of practical application in Perth and beyond.
Read WAGCOE's reports on the assessment of the Perth Basin [external link].