Italy - CNR


The National Research Council (CNR), whose budget is primarily fed by governmental institutions, is a public organization and the largest research body working in the field of science and humanistic in Italy. Its duty is to carry out, promote, spread, transfer and improve research activities in the main sectors of knowledge growth and of its applications for the scientific, technological, economic and social development of the Country. To this end, the activities of the organization are divided into macro areas of interdisciplinary scientific and technological research, concerning several sectors, among which Geothermal. It is organized in 11 Departments; those related to Renewable Energies are the Departments of Earth and Environment (DTA) and Energy and Transports (DET). The activities of the Departments are also developed in view of the existing collaboration  with research bodies outside the CNR, Italian and foreign universities, industries, consortia, strengthening the national presence on strategic issues of the various sectors.

Geothermal Energy by itself does not represent a unique Project, and different research approaches are developed in various sub-Projects of the two Departments. The most abundant research specifically developed for geothermal belongs to the project “Evaluation and Valorisation of Geothermal Resources”, which is coordinated by IGG (Istituto di Geoscienze e Georisorse, i.e., Institute of Geosciences and Earth Resources). IGG has inherited the long tradition for geothermal from the former International Institute for Geothermal Research of Pisa, which constituted the main core of IGG when this national Institute was established. The Institute coordinated the International School of Geothermics and the publication of the international journal "Geothermics" by Elsevier Science Ltd (Oxford), and participated to all national and many international geothermal assessments. IGG maintains the coordination of the Italian geothermal database and perform research related to the development and improvement of exploration technology and methodology, the study and modelling of high and low enthalpy geothermal systems, and reservoir and production engineering. Other institutes belonging to DTA and DET perform research in the field of exploration of investigation of geothermal systems and low temperature geothermal utilisation (heat pumps).

DTA, with the scientific assistance of IGG, also coordinates two main geothermal sub-programmes, both related to the assessment and development of geothermal resources in central and southern Italy, which are funded by the European Regional Development Fund, coordinated by the Ministry of Economic Development (VIGOR), and the Italian government (ATLAS).

Lead Person

Contact person for ERA-NET related to Geothermal Energy will be Dr. Adele Manzella of CNR-IGG. She worked in seismology, numerical modelling for seismic and electromagnetism. Working since 1990 at CNR as a geophysicist in geothermal exploration to conduct field and theoretical investigations of geothermal systems in Italy and abroad, in particular using the magnetotelluric method. Responsible for over 20 projects related to geothermal, crustal and volcanology exploration using geophysical methods, WP coordinator in geothermal research EU projects. She is the scientific coordinator of the two main CNR projects (VIGOR and ATLAS) for geothermal assessment of southern Italy. She also represents CNR within the EERA Geothermal Programme and IGA.