Institute characteristics

The main research directions investigated by the Institute follow the Research Plan of the Institute for 2015-2019, which was updated and refined in 2017, and approved by the Institution Board for the period to 2022.

The principal research directions of the Institute were and still are primarily motivated by the versatile utilization of the Earth’s crust, which represents a highly topical and extremely relevant issue, complying with the needs of society. The research activities cover a relatively wide spectrum of interdisciplinary research areas, ranging from the characterization of geomaterials to the study of processes taking place in the Earth’s crust, especially those induced by human activities, and their effects on the environment. Within this broad spectrum of research activities, supporting disciplines, such as applied mathematics and physics, chemistry, material disintegration, and environmental and social geography, are also developed.

Generally, research activities of the Institute are mainly focused on the development of geotechnologies for the extraction of minerals, where rising prices had motivated an interest in innovation and the creation of new, more efficient and more environmentally friendly mining processes. We also focuse on resolving issues related to the construction of underground structures, i.e., underground facilities for gas and other raw materials storage, and on of societal problems related to all aspects of the environment, above, at, or below the earth’s crust.

From the point of view of the activities of the Institute and its research potential, it is very important that activities of particular research teams are highly interconnected and complement one another. This is very advantageous as present-day research programs on the utilization of the Earth's crust constitute a very broad field, requiring the use of both demanding and very expensive experimental equipment, in close combination with high-level theoretical, computational, and modelling knowledge, as well as empirical confirmation from grounded observations. From this point of view, the Institute has established itself as a nationally powerful and internationally recognized research organization.