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Published: 7 September 2017  
Related theme(s) and subtheme(s)
Human resources & mobilityMarie Curie Actions
Industrial researchIndustrial processes & robotics
Research policyHorizon 2020
Countries involved in the project described in the article
France  |  Germany  |  Italy  |  Netherlands  |  United Kingdom
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Investigating Earth and fluid dynamics

Understanding how fluids and other materials flow in response to applied forces is critical to many industrial applications, energy production processes and even determining the stability of the ground beneath our feet. The field of study, known as rheology, is being advanced by an EU-funded research network combining expertise in geodynamics, mineral physics, seismology, fluid mechanics and materials science.

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Rheology – from the Greek word ‘to flow’ – is a critical issue for numerous industrial and natural processes. For example, understanding and controlling the rheology of complex fluids is essential for manufacturing cosmetics, paint, polymers, processed foods, ceramics and glass.

On a global scale, the complex rheology of the Earth is exemplified by plate tectonics, the deformation of the Earth’s surface in response to the convection of the liquid mantle underneath that influences the large-scale dynamics of our planet. It’s a critical area of study for estimating earthquakes and tsunami hazards, or determining where it is safe to locate natural reservoirs for chemical and radioactive waste.

The interaction between geological deformations and fluids is also a fundamental factor in energy production, both for the extraction of fossil fuels and for the development of clean energy from sources such as geothermal.

The EU-funded project CREEP is providing multi-disciplinary education in rheology and related fields to 16 early-stage researchers across 10 academic institutions and 11 private sector organisations. This experience-based training is supporting PhD projects that focus on the complex mechanical behaviour of Earth materials and its implications for geodynamic and industrial processes.

The CREEP network is encompassing this broad and varied range of applications for rheology research, providing early-stage researchers with skills in experimentation, modelling of deformation at various space and time scales, and seismology, using state-of-the-art research techniques.

The EU’s Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions programme is supporting CREEP through the innovative training networks (ITN) scheme which is designed to boost scientific excellence and business innovation.

Project details

  • Project acronym: CREEP
  • Participants: France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, United Kingdom
  • Project N°: 642029
  • Total costs: € 3 661 113
  • EU contribution: € 3 661 113
  • Duration: April 2015 to March 2019

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  Argentina
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  Bangladesh
  Belarus
  Belgium
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  Bolivia
  Botswana
  Brazil
  Bulgaria
  Burkina Faso
  Cambodia
  Cameroon
  Canada
  Cape Verde
  Chile
  China
  Colombia
  Costa Rica
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  Czech Republic
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  Ecuador
  Egypt
  Estonia
  Ethiopia
  Faroe Islands
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  Georgia