Engineering geophysics conference focuses on sustainability and global innovation

The International Conference on Engineering Geophysics (ICEG) successfully completed its Sixth Edition, addressing important topics on Sustainability with Energy Transition and CO2 Monitoring and Management.

The United Arab Emirates is building a sustainable, balanced, and diversified economy to ensure stability and prosperity through innovation and excellence. This conference was designed and operated with those qualities as guidelines and drivers. These priorities speak to social responsibility and strongly signal the need for effective and technically sound engineering geophysics to support regional growth. Therefore, the conscientious and technically rigorous application of engineering geophysics has become mandatory prior to the approval of any construction project in Abu Dhabi Emirate.

In line with the defined priorities, the United Arab Emirates University (UAEU) and Al Ain City Municipality (AAM), in partnership with the Society of Exploration Geophysicists (SEG), successfully delivered the Sixth edition of the International Conference on Engineering Geophysics (ICEG) virtually from 24–28 Oct 2021.

One measure of the success of the six editions of the ICEG is reflected by the number of participants and the great interest and positive feedback from both local authorities and the international geo-community applying geophysical methods to engineering, environmental, archaeological, geotechnical, and forensic problems.

The ICEG 2021 was focused on global innovation, creativity, advances, and new approaches in the field of engineering/environmental geophysics and related fields. In addition to the core engineering/environmental and geotechnical sessions, special sessions were included that related to applications of geophysics to geothermal and hydrology problems, and the emergence of artificial intelligence and machine learning in applied geophysics.

The conference served as a platform for the global near-surface community. It brought together more than 200 attendees from 69 organizations, spread across 29 countries to participate in a rich program that included three panel discussions and 80 technical presentations. The diversity of the attendees from academia, research, government, and industry experience provided the essential engagement, learnings, and challenges on regional problems, as well as insights into problems, technical innovations, and solutions from around the globe.

Panel topics focused on Minerals and Metals Exploration in the Arabian Peninsula to Support the Energy Transition, Global Standards related to Engineering Geophysics, and CO2 Monitoring and Management. Global experts at the very cutting edge of their disciplines delivered keynote presentations on their latest research, experiences, future goals for engineering/environmental geophysics, and raising public awareness to the critical role of near-surface geophysics in the future of a sustainable planet.

In search of significant contributions to the future of applied near-surface geophysics, the conference provided a unique opportunity for the near-surface geophysical community to compete for the Innovation Awards for Geophysics, a one-of-a-kind competition in the Middle East Region. A total of 33 qualified entries were submitted to the Innovation Award Selection Committee. We are pleased at this time to announce the winners of the competition:

  • 1st Place – Sjoerd de Ridder, University of Leeds
  • 2nd Place – Daniele Colombo, Saudi Aramco
  • 3rd Place – Chenyan Wu, Southern University of Science and Technology

They are all recognized leaders at the forefront of their field.

Additionally, ICEG invited students across the globe to submit their abstracts in a student competition aimed to recognize and award the up and coming technical contributors within the community. From the 24 submissions received, we are delighted to announce the top three student winners of this competition are:

  • 1st Place – Roshen John Joseph, United Arab Emirates University
  • 2nd Place – Jiahe Yan, Jilin University and Zhou Ziyang, Kyoto University

The ICEG conference will continue to be a fundamental platform for the global near-surface geophysical community, and we look forward to continuing as an integral part in boldly addressing current and future challenges as a community.