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Geology Research

Faculty in the Geology Program pursue research in fluvial geomorphology, geophysics, carbon sequestration, arctic tectonics, petroleum geology, energy exploration, hydrogeology, paleontology, structural geology, remote sensing, GIS, dendrochronology, carbonate sedimentology, and geoscience education. This provides an exciting environment for multidisciplinary research focused on the Earth as our habitat, but also as the planet that is most accessible to our scientific curiosity.

Research Linkages Around Morgantown

The WV Geological and Economic Survey (WVGES), located 5 miles from Morgantown, makes available laboratory equipment, fossil collections, cataloged drill cuttings and core, and subsurface logs from deep wells in the region. The Survey also offers students work and thesis opportunities in coal resources and petroleum geology. Several survey geologists are adjunct faculty.

The National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) of the U.S. Department of Energy laboratory located in Morgantown carries out and funds research on fossil-fuel resources and environmental problems. NETL projects support Geology faculty and graduate-student research.

The West Virginia Water Research Institute (WVWRI) is the premier water research center in West Virginia and an international leader in certain fields. The Institute is based at the National Center for Coal and Energy at the Evansdale Campus of WVU. Geology professor Dr. Joe Donovan is the director of the Hydrogeology Research Center, within the WVWRI.

Extensive mining in the Appalachian region provides an excellent opportunity for students to study the environmental effects of coal extraction. WVU Geology faculty collaborate with the National Mine Land Reclamation Center (NMLRC) based on the WVU Evansdale Campus. The NMLRC is the main center for coordination of acid-mine drainage research in the U.S. WVU Geology has instrumented groundwater-research sites in the region for training and research.

The Department houses the Statewide GIS Technical Center, the central source for GIS resources in West Virginia. The Tech Center is responsible for scanning and digitization of USGS DLGs, DOQs, and a host of other data products. The Center provides technical-support services for the development and operation of GIS in West Virginia. A limited number of RA opportunities are available related to Center activities.