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New Chair announced for UQ Geothermal Energy Centre of Excellence

The Queensland Government and The University of Queensland (UQ) announced that Professor Trevor Grigg had taken up the position as the Independent Chair of the Board for the sustainable energy research centre.

Minister for Natural Resources, Mines and Energy Stephen Robertson said Professor Grigg brought a wealth of experience to the position and would help build Queensland’s smart and green credentials. "The Queensland Government is committed to a renewable energy future and we see geothermal as a significant component of this goal," he said.

The State Government provided UQ with $15 million to help establish QGECE and drive research and development in the geothermal energy sector in Queensland. Geothermal is not a new concept, however, Queensland has some unique advantages primarily in the Cooper Basin which has some of the hottest rocks of their type in the world and is a relatively shallow. QGECE’s focus is in developing technologies that position Queensland to utilise this natural resource.

Professor Grigg, who was formerly Deputy Vice Chancellor (International and Development) at The University of Queensland, is an engineering economist with a strong commercial and infrastructure planning and investment background.

Over the past decade, he has been involved in a number of major international initiatives linking UQ with overseas industry, government and university partners in collaborative development programs. He has extensive board director experience acquired over 20 years on research and development, commercialisation, telecommunications, public utility and international education companies.

The research being conducted at the Centre includes new cycles and cycle fluids for higher efficiencies; new cooling tower designs; and new knowledge on the magnitude and the nature of geothermal resources in Queensland.

The Centre has already acquired a global reputation through its pioneering work in supercritical carbon dioxide geothermal siphon. The Centre held a very successful meeting with its stakeholders earlier this year, where 73 delegates from industry, academia and government from around Australia discussed the Centre’s program of activities.

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