School of Mechanical & Mining Engineering

Distinguished Lecture Series

Speaker: Professor Stefano Lo Russo, Department of Environment, Land and Infrastructure Engineering, Politecnico di Torino, Italy

In 2040, the world population is expected to exceed 9 billion and consequently global total energy demand will continue to considerably increase over the next years. Despite the undoubted role of fossil sources, renewable energy is playing a key role to sustain this grow and the world is experiencing a global energy transition aimed to foster a sustainable economic growth and to fit with the sustainable development goals.  Although the exploitation of geothermal energy still records very low values within the framework of renewable resources, providing little more than 1% to the world energy demand and about 3% to the demand for heat, its potential is considerable due to the available amount of heat stored in the subsoil. Warm and hot fluids can be extracted from the underground in a wide range of temperatures and discharge rates to produce electric power directly. In addition, even the modest temperatures found at shallower depths can be used to extract or store heat by means low-enthalpy geothermal systems.  Among low-enthalpy geothermal systems, Open-loop Groundwater Heat Pumps (GWHPs) are currently considered one of the most energy efficient and environmentally friendly air-conditioning systems and the best option where shallow aquifers conditions are suitable.

Stefano LO RUSSO Ph.D., is Full Professor in Hydrogeology and Engineering geology, Petroleum and Mining Geology, Geothermal Energy in the Department of Environment, Land and Infrastructure Engineering at Politecnico di Torino. He was born in Torino (Italy) on October 15th, 1975. Graduated cum laude in Geological Sciences in 1999 he holds a Ph.D. in Environmental Engineering from Politecnico di Torino in 2004.  Advisor to the Rector for the relations with the Russian Federation.  In 2000 he acquired the title of Professional Geologist and started working as a consultant in the field of engineering geology and groundwater. Since 2002 he worked as geologist over 4 years on Water planning Department of the Piedmont regional authority. During this period, he worked also at European Commission - DG Enlargement as expert for training projects in the European eastern countries (TAIEX) and member of WG 2C of DG Environment on protected areas for the mplementation of WFD (2000/60/EC).  He was Assistant Professor at Politecnico from 2007 until 2014 and Associate Professor since 2014 until 2017. He is author and co-author of several national and international peer-reviewed publications, and appears in various conference and symposium proceedings. He is member of the IAH (International Association of Hydrogeologists), EGU (European Geosciences Union), AIGA (Italian Association of Applied Geology). He is member of the Executive Committee of the GEAM Association.

Research activities

His scientific activity focuses mainly on the study of low-enthalpy geothermal systems as well as the hydrogeological problems related to the protection, management and planning of groundwater resources. Other scientific interests regard the engineering geologic mapping through innovative techniques of digital photo-interpretation and remote sensing, the study of the deep-seated gravitational slope deformations (DSGSDs) and the rock-fall risk analysis and mitigation. He is currently scientific coordinator of several research projects concerning low-enthalpy geothermal resources and hydrogeology.

Visiting Professor at the MGIMO University - Moscow State Institute of International Relations of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation (Moscow, Russian Federation)

Visiting Professor at Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University (St. Petersburg, Russian Federation)

Visiting Professor at Gubkin Russian State University of Oil and Gas (Moscow, Russian Federation)

Visiting Scholar at the NCGRT - National Center for Groundwater Research and Training and Flinders University (Adelaide, South Australia)

Editorial activities

Member of the Editorial Board of Environmental Earth Sciences - Springer - ISSN: 1866-6280 (since 09/2015)

Member of the Editorial Board of Geofluids - Hidawi - Wiley - ISSN: 1468-8115 (since 08/2016)

Member of the Scientific Committee of GEAM Geoingegneria Ambientale e Mineraria Patron - ISSN 1121-9041 (since 01/2016)

Teaching activities

Stefano Lo Russo is currently Faculty member of the Master of Science programs in Petroleum and Mining Engineering, Environmental Engineering and Energy and Nuclear Engineering. He is currently teaching the courses "Petroleum and mining geology" and "Geothermal Energy" at Politecnico di Torino.  Faculty member of the PhD Program Urban and Regional Development.

Rose Clements
3365 3668
10:00 – 11:00 am

Monday, 12 August 2019


Room 502
Advanced Engineering (49)
UQ, St Lucia