Earth Resources and Renewable Energy Research Programme
Using energy sources and geothermal resources for national development
The objective of the research we conduct is designed to find new energy sources and better utilizing the existing resources. We have also extended our research to other earth resources such as minerals and geothermal resources.
This project on geothermal resources of Sri Lanka aims to evaluate these resources with a view to using them for national development. A combination of geophysical, geochemical and geological techniques are used to evaluate these resources.
A pioneering research project on thermoelectricity was initiated to introduce this new area of research to Sri Lanka. Thermoelectric generators produce electricity directly from heat energy using the “Seebeck Effect”. Thermoelectricity can increase the overall efficiency of an existing system by “scavenging‟ and converting waste heat to electricity and can be operated with any heat source and in any temperature range.
A new project on radon mapping is being conducted jointly with the Atomic Energy Board, Sri Lanka to establish the baseline of background radiation levels and to find mineral resources. The ER and RE research project collaborates with the Department of Geology, University of Peradeniya on a Petrology and Mineralogy project.
Why does this matter ?
Despite its size, Sri Lanka has a considerable number of economic mineral deposits, and may have many undiscovered resources as well. Understanding the basic principles on the origin of minerals is as important as employing modern techniques, to identify new resources.
Sustainable utilization of already known deposits as well as finding unknown deposits will contribute to the economic development of the country. The world’s energy needs are escalating and our aim is to avoid the crisis that we will inevitably face when we finally run out of non renewable energy resources.