Engineering Earth pp 1549-1566 | Cite as

Geo-Engineering South Australia: The Case of Lake Eyre

  • Viorel Badescu
  • Richard B. Cathcart
  • Marius Paulescu
  • Paul Gravila
  • Alexander A. Bolonkin


This macroengineering project proposal exploits technologies that have the potential to enliven the arid region surrounding Lake Eyre, South Australia. The distinctive macroproject components are: Lake Eyre is gradually filled to a higher level by controlling evaporation and by pumping seawater from the nearby ocean using cheap tension textile tubes. The necessary energy could be produced by photovoltaic cells in a very attractive application without electricity storage requirements. Eventually, Lake Eyre is to be partially lidded with a floating impermeable plastic cap that reduces evaporation. Filled with seawater, Lake Eyre can be used as a giant reservoir for irrigation in biosaline agriculture. Elementary mathematical models for the proposed tasks and rough economical estimations are presented. Based on overall results, we concluded that the macroproject is feasible already with existing technologies and could even become profitable in a few decades. But beyond paying off the capital investment, the greatest implementation benefit is the prospect of creating conditions for human settlement in the low fertility soils of the Lake Eyre Basin. Additional research directions are briefly presented. Keywords: Australia, Lake Eyre, Macro-engineering, Evaporation control, Imported seawater, Aquaduct, PV cells, biosaline agriculture.


Solar Global Irradiation South Basin North Basin Photovoltaic Power Plant Dominant Rainfall 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Viorel Badescu
    • 1
  • Richard B. Cathcart
    • 2
  • Marius Paulescu
    • 3
  • Paul Gravila
    • 3
  • Alexander A. Bolonkin
    • 4
  1. 1.Candida Oancea InstitutePolytechnic University of BucharestBucharestRomania
  2. 2.GeographosBurbankUSA
  3. 3.Department of PhysicsWest University of TimisoaraTimisoaraRomania
  4. 4.C & RBrooklynUSA

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