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Applied Multidimensional Geological Modeling

11 March 2024

This well illustrated volume provides a comprehensive account of where computerised geological modelling is heading. The editors combine contributions from 129 authors, mostly from the UK, with the remaining authors mainly from The Netherlands, North America, Germany, France, and Spain. For geological models, digital output depends on the original data upon which the models are based. The time scales over which such models are produced must be compared to the expense of gathering fresh observations, which would improve overall model reliability. The question of model uncertainty merits an all too brief chapter, in which statistical techniques such as standard deviation, probability, confidence indices, and information entropy maps are highlighted. These techniques accentuate where it might be most economic to gather more targeted field data to enhance the future reliability of geological models.

Following an introduction, a chapter on the transition from 2D to 3D modelling acknowledges the power of historic geological maps to see beyond a flat piece of paper. This chapter also considers the legislation, management, and potential benefits of enhanced legal powers to ensure better quality data is recorded by third parties for official archives. It also covers different international approaches to planning subsurface developments and managing key natural resources, with a clear table highlighting examples in later chapters. This opening section concludes with an examination of why establishing a better understanding of ground conditions and use of geological models has wider economic benefits, including assessing geotechnical risks.

The bulk of this book is devoted to the building and managing of geological models, with chapters on data sources, differing approaches to model creation, and data visualisation and dissemination. The latter portion of the book explores the different applications of geological modelling, such as in groundwater, urban planning, and geothermal heating and cooling.

A brief chapter about future possibilities and challenges concludes with a thoughtful discussion about the likely developments in geological modelling, including overcoming longstanding technical issues. Along with a need for software convergence, often there is insufficiently adequate site-specific data to constrain models. On the positive side, drones are being developed to acquire real-time 3D data and LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) images, alongside mobile phone cameras for ground truthing and 3D printing. While the book is aimed at industry professionals and academics, it is written in a very accessible style, providing a wide range of insights and examples for policy makers and students.

Reviewed by David Nowell



BY: A.K. Turner, H. Kessler, & M.J. van der Meulen (eds.) (2021). Wiley Blackwell. 672 pp. (hbk)

ISBN: 978-1-119-16312-1

PRICE: £82.95 www.wiley.com