production
Skip to Content

GL5570: EARTH’S ENERGY RESOURCES (2023-2024)

Last modified: 31 Jul 2023 11:38


Course Overview

This course aims to provide students with a good grounding in the role that geoscientists will play in the drive to net-zero. The course will focus on different resources the Earth can provide to support the energy transition, particularly critical economic minerals and sustainable oil and gas extraction. Lectures and Practical Exercises will introduce the skills required to evaluate a geological resource. There will be a strong focus on the sustainable, ethical and economic arguments for utilising these resources and their importance for integrated energy systems.

Course Details

Study Type Postgraduate Level 5
Session Second Sub Session Credit Points 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits)
Campus Aberdeen Sustained Study No
Co-ordinators
  • Mr Joseph Armstrong

What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?

  • Any Postgraduate Programme (Studied)

What other courses must be taken with this course?

None.

What courses cannot be taken with this course?

None.

Are there a limited number of places available?

No

Course Description

Course Aims:

  • Provide students with a good grounding in the role that geoscientists and subsurface specialists will play in the drive to net-zero.
  • Introduce different resources the Earth can provide to support the energy transition, particularly the raw materials and critical elements required to support decarbonisation and the transition from oil and gas.
  • Introduce the skills required to evaluate a geological resource through Lectures and Practical Exercises taught by academic and industry experts.
  • A strong focus on the sustainable, ethical and economic arguments for using these resources and their importance for integrated energy systems.

Course Content

  1. Risking and Economic Assessment of Resources.
  2. Introduction to Petroleum Geoscience.
  3. Regional Petroleum Exploration.
  4. Introduction to Ore Deposits and Critical Elements.
  5. Basic Ore Mineralogy and Deposit Types.
  6. Fundamentals of Mineral Exploration.
  7. Mineral Resource Economics.
  8. Environmental & Geopolitical Assessment of Resources.
  9. Supply and Demand of Critical Raw Materials.

A series of lectures and hands-on practical exercises will introduce students to the fundamental skills required to evaluate a geological resource in the subsurface.

The course begins with a series of lectures and assessed practical exercises on resource risking, uncertainty and economic models which are designed to prepare students for the application of their geological knowledge to evaluate the resources the Earth can provide to support the energy transition. This will be followed by an introduction to petroleum geoscience, petroleum play aspects and an overview of regional petroleum exploration, with a focus on sustainable gas extraction.

The majority of the course is composed of a series of lectures, hands-on practical exercises and fieldwork which focus on the formation and identification of critical mineral deposits in the crust. Students are taught how to identify key ore minerals in the field and under the microscope, utilising their observations to construct geological histories of mineral deposits. Students are also given an overview of the advanced analytical techniques used in mineral exploration and ore deposit characterisation. The one-day fieldtrip focusses on the critical mineral potential of NE Scotland and the processes underlying these mineral occurrences, specifically looking at the raw materials essential for the production of high-capacity batteries.

The lecture series then focusses on the economics of mineral exploration, prospect evaluation and reserve estimates. The ethical, environmental and geopolitical factors associated with exploiting the Earth’s raw materials will then be discussed in detail. Finally, the evolving issues around the supply and demand of critical raw materials during the energy transition will be demonstrated and discussed.

Upon completion of the course, students will:

  1. Be able to describe the modes of formation and crustal environments of the main ore deposit types found on Earth and identify their main characteristics.
  2. Apply standard petrographic observation techniques to describe and identify key ore minerals, recognise cross-cutting relationships and construct parageneses for mineralised deposits.
  3. Recognise the different geological techniques and approaches used in mineral exploration and demonstrate the difference between resources, probable reserves and proven reserves.
  4. Be able to evaluate and communicate the ethical, environmental and geopolitical factors associated with exploiting Earth’s energy resources.
  5. Define and explain prospect risking. Describe the economic assessment procedures used during the exploration for resources.
  6. Be able to define criticality in relation to mineral resources and explain the importance of critical minerals in the transition to net-zero.
  7. Recognise the key features of a petroleum system and the role of a geoscientist in the full life cycle of oil and gas exploration and production.
  8. Be able to summarise the processes of play mapping and prospect mapping in relation to petroleum exploration.

Associated Costs

DescriptionValue
1 full day field trip GBP 300.00

Contact Teaching Time

Information on contact teaching time is available from the course guide.

Teaching Breakdown

More Information about Week Numbers


Details, including assessments, may be subject to change until 31 August 2023 for 1st half-session courses and 22 December 2023 for 2nd half-session courses.

Summative Assessments

Exam

Assessment Type Summative Weighting 35
Assessment Weeks 39,40 Feedback Weeks 44

Look up Week Numbers

Feedback

Class Test

Feedback: Provided following marking via MyAberdeen

Learning Outcomes
Knowledge LevelThinking SkillOutcome
ConceptualUnderstandBe able to define criticality in relation to mineral resources and explain the importance of critical minerals in the transition to net-zero.
ConceptualUnderstandBe able to describe the modes of formation and crustal environments of the main ore deposit types found on Earth and identify their main characteristics.
ConceptualUnderstandBe able to summarise the processes of play mapping and prospect mapping in relation to petroleum exploration.
ConceptualUnderstandRecognise the key features of a petroleum system and the role of a geoscientist in the full life cycle of oil and gas exploration and production.
ConceptualUnderstandRecognise the different geological techniques and approaches used in mineral exploration and demonstrate the difference between resources, probable reserves and proven reserves.
ConceptualUnderstandBe able to evaluate and communicate the ethical, environmental and geopolitical factors associated with exploiting Earth’s energy resources.
FactualAnalyseApply standard petrographic observation techniques to describe and identify key ore minerals, recognise cross-cutting relationships and construct parageneses for mineralised deposits.
ProceduralEvaluateDefine and explain prospect risking. Describe the economic assessment procedures used during the exploration for resources.

Lab Book

Assessment Type Summative Weighting 25
Assessment Weeks 28,29,30 Feedback Weeks 34

Look up Week Numbers

Feedback

Feedback provided on MyAberdeen

Learning Outcomes
Knowledge LevelThinking SkillOutcome
ConceptualUnderstandBe able to describe the modes of formation and crustal environments of the main ore deposit types found on Earth and identify their main characteristics.
FactualAnalyseApply standard petrographic observation techniques to describe and identify key ore minerals, recognise cross-cutting relationships and construct parageneses for mineralised deposits.

Oral Presentation: Individual

Assessment Type Summative Weighting 30
Assessment Weeks 30 Feedback Weeks 30

Look up Week Numbers

Feedback

Feedback provided on MyAberdeen and in-person.

Learning Outcomes
Knowledge LevelThinking SkillOutcome
ConceptualUnderstandBe able to define criticality in relation to mineral resources and explain the importance of critical minerals in the transition to net-zero.
ConceptualUnderstandBe able to evaluate and communicate the ethical, environmental and geopolitical factors associated with exploiting Earth’s energy resources.
ConceptualUnderstandRecognise the different geological techniques and approaches used in mineral exploration and demonstrate the difference between resources, probable reserves and proven reserves.

Assessed on coursework

Assessment Type Summative Weighting 10
Assessment Weeks 26 Feedback Weeks 30

Look up Week Numbers

Feedback

Feedback provided on MyAberdeen

Learning Outcomes
Knowledge LevelThinking SkillOutcome
ProceduralEvaluateDefine and explain prospect risking. Describe the economic assessment procedures used during the exploration for resources.

Formative Assessment

There are no assessments for this course.

Resit Assessments

Class Test

Assessment Type Summative Weighting 100
Assessment Weeks Feedback Weeks

Look up Week Numbers

Feedback

2- hour exam

Feedback: Provided following marking via MyAberdeen

Learning Outcomes
Knowledge LevelThinking SkillOutcome
Sorry, we don't have this information available just now. Please check the course guide on MyAberdeen or with the Course Coordinator

Course Learning Outcomes

Knowledge LevelThinking SkillOutcome
ConceptualUnderstandBe able to describe the modes of formation and crustal environments of the main ore deposit types found on Earth and identify their main characteristics.
FactualAnalyseApply standard petrographic observation techniques to describe and identify key ore minerals, recognise cross-cutting relationships and construct parageneses for mineralised deposits.
ConceptualUnderstandRecognise the different geological techniques and approaches used in mineral exploration and demonstrate the difference between resources, probable reserves and proven reserves.
ConceptualUnderstandBe able to evaluate and communicate the ethical, environmental and geopolitical factors associated with exploiting Earth’s energy resources.
ProceduralEvaluateDefine and explain prospect risking. Describe the economic assessment procedures used during the exploration for resources.
ConceptualUnderstandBe able to define criticality in relation to mineral resources and explain the importance of critical minerals in the transition to net-zero.
ConceptualUnderstandRecognise the key features of a petroleum system and the role of a geoscientist in the full life cycle of oil and gas exploration and production.
ConceptualUnderstandBe able to summarise the processes of play mapping and prospect mapping in relation to petroleum exploration.

Compatibility Mode

We have detected that you are have compatibility mode enabled or are using an old version of Internet Explorer. You either need to switch off compatibility mode for this site or upgrade your browser.