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What is the ITHERLAB project about?

ITHERLAB: ­ In-situ thermal rock properties lab

The ITHERLAB project is a MCSA IF project awarded to S. Fuchs and investigates the influence of in-situ (present state in the geological subsurface) pressure and temperature on rock thermal properties (thermal conductivity and thermal diffusivity) as the essential rock parameters in the evaluation of the Earth thermal field. The ITHERLAB project will establish mathematical formulations for p/T dependence of both parameters and demonstrate whether micro-structural effects affect these relations for different rock types. For that purpose, an innovative laboratory device will be developed and pilot-tested allowing for dry and saturated rocks measurements of thermal conductivity and thermal diffusivity at pressures and temperatures that are simultaneously raised to values up to 200 MPa and 200°C, respectively. These are the conditions for depths (to approx. 7 km) that are of interest in the use of Earth resources, such as geothermal energy or hydrocarbons. Currently, no laboratory standard procedure exists for this task.

Key information: more details | scientific background | structure & workpackages | progress and results | team |


14.07.2017 - Announcement: Talk at MinPet-Seminar at the UP


On July the 14th, the fellow will give a talk at the MinPet-seminar at the University of Potsdam entitled: How minerals drive the geophysical temperature exploration of the subsurface space (MinPet-Seminar online).

Category: Public outreach, The fellow

24.06.2017 - Outreach: Talk at #LNDW17


On June the 24th, Sven Fuchs gave a public talk entitled: "Geothermie, Öl & Endlager"-Prognosen: Wie heiß darf es denn werden, bitte? [Geothermal energy, hydrocarbons & nuclear waste repositories: How hot can it be?] at the Long Night of the Sciences 2017 (Lange Nacht der Wissenschaften in Potsdam, Germany).

Category: Public outreach

21.06.2017 - Helmholtz Management Academy successfully completed


On June the 21th, the fellow was awarded for successfully attending the " Start-Leading" Course 2017 at the Helmholtz Management Academy. (Program details ).

Category: The fellow

20.05.2017 - Outreach: Geology Rocks Kids


The fellow introduced pre-school kids into the rock cycle and the importance of geology for their daily life. The GeologyRocksKids activity was factually supported by the GeoWunderWerkstatt.

Category: Public outreach

08.05.2017 - Status meeting

8th May 2017 saw the first status meeting of the ITHERLAB project in Potsdam, Germany.

12.04.2017 - Helmholtz Academy: ‘Start leading’


Sven Fuchs successfully applied for the Helmholtz-Academy program ’Start leading’. The half-year course of 3 modules (10 days) in 2017 focuses on self-reflection and developing leadership skills, as well as self-management and the understanding of complex organizations.

01.03.2017 - Potsdam Graduate School: Senior Teaching Professionals


The fellow was selected to attend the ’Senior Teaching Professionals’ Course at the Potsdam-Graduate-School. The one-year course focuses on didactic training to improve teaching skills and includes the design of competence-oriented lesson, teaching sessions, subject-specific support and feedback by mentee as well as collegial consultation. Connected to this program, Sven Fuchs will develop a lecture for the winter term 2017/18 at the University of Potsdam.


11.11.2016 - Lecture at the University of Greifswald

Sven Fuchs gives the lecture on introduction into geophysics at the University of Greifswald in the winter term 2016/17.

04.10.2016 - Kick-off meeting held in Potsdam

4th October 2016 saw the Kick-off meeting of the ITHERLAB project in Potsdam, Germany. This meeting brought together all members of the project team to plan the work of the first three to six month.

01.10.2016 - Project start

The official project run time of ITHERLAB starts. The duration of the project will be until September 30, 2018.


01.09.2016 - Launch of the website

The project website has been released on 1st of September (deliverable) and allows you to quickly inform yourself about the objectives, goals and results of the project.

Category: Public outreach

01.06.2016 - Online announcements

Some online announcements related to ITHERLAB has been published : Homepage of the GFZ Potsdam, EU - CORDIS, and Das dritte Mittel.

Category: Public outreach


11.04.2016 - First newspaper article

A first newspaper article that shortly describes the aim of ITHERLAB was launched in the regional German newspaper "Märkische Allgemeine Zeitung".

Category: Public outreach