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Efficient exploration of the geothermal potential in urban areas - geoPuR

What is the potential for district heating of the Potsdam area? Determining geothermal potentials requires accurate knowledge of the geological subsurface. In the frame of geoPuR, the development of innovative exploration methods will be continued that based on fibre-optic strain measurements applied to the fibre optical telecommunication network of Potsdam. This new technology recently developed in Iceland, opens up new ways to image and monitore the geological underground. This is of particular importance for urbane centres where common exploration methods are often challenging to conduct and limited by the available space, regulations or public acceptance. Based on the new data, we will develop new exploration modules on a modular basis, which can be adopted flexible on different locations and conditions.


  • June/August 2020 – Seismic experiments during the controlled blasting of two WWII bombs in downtown Potsdam (first, second).
  • December 2020 – Seismic experiments during the active seismic measurement campaign designed for geothermal exploration in downtown Potsdam led by the Energie und Wasser Potsdam (EWP).

geoPuR supports the goals of the Masterplan 100% Klimaschutz bis 2050 of the city of Potsdam

 Related project: SENSE - Distributed fiber optic strain sensing along existing telecommunication networks for efficient seismic exploration and monitoring of geothermal reservoirs

The project is aimed to develop an exploration toolbox and workflows that shall help to:

  • Develop a detailed geological model of Potsdam
  • Collect all available local exploration data
  • Extension of the database using seismic data derived from fibre optic cables
  • Technologies for the efficient localisation of single tracks in crowded city centres
  • Analysis of ground motion caused by transport users

Cooperative work is anticipated with the following companies and institutes with the geoPuR project:

ILB Investitionsbank des Landes Brandenburg

Duration: 01.04.2020 - 31.03.2022

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