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Geological Survey Ireland and partners bring ‘Underground Wonder’ to BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition

12 January 2017


Minister for State for Natural Resources, Seán Kyne TD, congratulates entrants on their keen interest in earth science and natural resources


Students from across Ireland will explore 'Underground Wonder' at the Geological Survey Ireland led interactive Geological Sciences stand at this year's BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition. A team of professional geologists will be on hand in Dublin's RDS from 12th-14thJanuary hosting a range of activities revealing the extraordinary formation of our precious rocks, minerals and landscape and how geology impacts our everyday lives.  


Minister for State Seán Kyne stated "I am particularly pleased to see the scientific talent being developed in Ireland. Many students have demonstrated a keen interest in geology and earth sciences this year, with projects covering topics such as radon awareness and flood prevention. These are growing and urgent matters that impact profoundly on citizens and industry in Ireland.  Our government has recognised these concerns, which is why we are pleased to support the Tellus programme in its creation of radon maps, and the Groundwater programme, providing additional resources for flood monitoring in karst limestone regions and INFOMAR mapping our vulnerable coastline. By building our knowledge base, we can strive toward making Ireland a healthier and safer place in which to live and do business."


From marvelous minerals to fabulous fossils, wondrous water resources and extraordinary earthquakes, visitors to the stand will get an in-depth and hands-on look at the geology of Ireland. Geological Survey and partners from Petroleum Affairs Division (PAD), the National Museum of Ireland, Marine Institute and the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies (DIAS) will be on hand to teach budding geologists about oil and gas, the minerals that make up everyday objects and to demonstrate how earthquakes are detected and measured.


To really help visitors get to grips with 'Underground Wonder,' the team from Tellus - a ground-breaking geological mapping project – will be revealing how the project surveys our landscapes from the air and on the ground. Marine scientists from INFOMAR will be on hand to explain how most of Ireland is actually under the sea! The Underground Wonder stand is located in the Eco Zone with activities running throughout the exhibition.




Notes to the Editors


The Underground Wonder stand is located in the Eco Zone (stand 12) at the Exhibition. It contains exhibitions from the Geological Survey's Tellus, INFOMAR and Groundwater programmes and exhibitions from partners in the Petroleum Affairs Division (DCCAE), Dublin Institute of Advanced Studies and the Natural History Museum of Ireland.

  • INFOMAR (INtegrated Mapping FOr the Sustainable Development of Ireland's Marine Resource) is a joint project between Geological Survey, Ireland and the Marine Institute, funded by the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment. It maps the Irish seabed, mostly using sonar systems on boats. INFOMAR produces data and maps of seabed depth, relief, composition and shipwrecks. Its data is used to update navigation charts for safety at sea and provides key baseline data for Ireland's marine sector.
  • The Groundwater Programme is responsible for mapping water in bedrock, water in sand and gravel deposits, and karst features that store and carry groundwater. It identifies places where we might need to protect our water and studies areas where groundwater may cause flooding (such as turloughs). The programme uses techniques including water level measuring, river gauging, flow monitoring, dye tracer testing and LIDAR (Light Detection And Ranging) with the aim of creating 3D maps and models to better understand and manage Ireland's water resources.
  • The Tellus survey is a national programme to gather geochemical and geophysical data across the island of Ireland – in other words, to examine the chemical and physical properties of our soils, rocks and water. As part of this survey, teams collect samples across the country, both via soil samples taken from the ground, and via geophysical information gathered via low-flying aircraft. The information from the survey allows for the creation of new geological maps, and helps us to manage and make the best use of our environmental, agricultural and natural resources. The coupling of airborne geophysics and ground-based geochemistry provides a richness of data which puts Ireland amongst the top countries in the world for the quality, breadth and availability of geoscience information.

Geological Survey Ireland, Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment, is the national geoscience data centre for Ireland. It is responsible for providing geological data, advice and information, and produces a range of maps, reports and datasets. Many sectors of Irish society benefit from Geological Survey Ireland's services, including individual communities and  the general public; government departments, local authorities & state agencies; EU, European geological surveys and agencies; researchers and the educational sector; engineering and construction; mining and quarrying; energy, agriculture and the marine sector; heritage, environment, leisure and tourism.

Petroleum Affairs Division (PAD), Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment, aims to maximise the benefits of indigenous oil and gas resources, while ensuring that exploration and production (E&P) activities are conducted with due regard to safety, environmental impact and other land and sea users. It is responsible for licensing and regulating oil and gas E&P activities, both offshore and onshore Ireland. PAD's role extends from policy development to promoting the opportunity to invest in exploration in the Irish offshore to licensing and the regulation of licensed E&P activities. It also plays a lead role in initiating and supporting research directed at deepening knowledge of the oil and gas potential of the Irish offshore.


Koen Verbruggen

Director, Geological survey

087 2042974                              

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