Associate Faculty, University of Hawaii Manoa
2017 Education Award Winner
Nicole Lautze is Associate Faculty at the University of Hawaii Manoa (UHM), where she founded the Hawaii Groundwater and Geothermal Resources Center (HGGRC). During her five-year tenure at UHM, she has mentored more than 30 undergraduate and graduate students and has been granted nearly $2 million as lead investigator. She leads a team of senior scientists in the development of an updated geothermal resource assessment for the state of Hawaii. The resource assessment involves the compilation and collection of geological, geochemical, and geophysical data across the state, and the development and implementation of a statistical methodology that integrates the data into a geothermal resource probability map. She previously led a geothermal digitization effort for the state that culminated in the launch of www.higp.hawaii.edu/hggrc in 2015. The HGGRC website is a community resource that has received tens of thousands of hits and more than 150,000 document downloads since launch. The Hawaii legislature set a policy objective that the state be 100% renewable by 2045, but there is surprisingly little discussion of better characterizing the state’s geothermal resource potential, a situation that Lautze is trying to change. She holds a BS in Geology from UCLA and a PhD in Geology and Geophysics from University of Hawaii Manoa. She received two Fulbright fellowships (to Italy and Peru), a National Science Foundation International Research Fellowship (to Italy), and a U.S. Geological Survey Mendenhall Postdoctoral Fellowship.