Earth Sciences Division Staff: Burton M. (Mack) Kennedy
Burton M. (Mack) Kennedy
Kennedy completed his PhD in Planetary Science with a focus on early solar system isotopic structures and chronology from Washington University, St. Louis in 1981. Subsequently, he was awarded a post doctoral research position in the UC Berkeley Department of Physics. During his tenure in the Physics Department, he established a noble gas isotope geochemistry lab designed specifically to develop and use noble gases and their isotopes as natural tracers for fluid processes in the Earth’s crust. In 1991, Kennedy joined the Earth Sciences Division at Berkeley Lab, as a staff scientist, incorporating the noble gas laboratory into the newly founded Center for Isotope Geochemistry, Directed by Prof. Don DePaolo. While a member of ESD Kennedy has served as the Group Leader for the Environmental Measurement Laboratory, providing geochemical analytical support to ESD (1995-2001); the Group Leader for the Center for Isotope Geochemistry (1999-present); and the ESD Program Lead for Geothermal Energy Development (2001-present).
Kennedy’s research interests focus on naturally occurring isotopes for investigating problems, such as:
- sources, geochemical evolution, transport process and flow rates of crustal fluids
- trapping of noble gases in sediments and the role biological processes may play
- time scales for processes using both cosmogenic and radiometric techniques, with a focus on difficult to date young materials
- tectonic and magmatic processes and their impact on crustal fluids and the development of economic resources
- role of fluids in active faults chemical and isotopic fractionation related to transport in both saturated and unsaturated zones
- Ph.D., Earth and Planetary Sciences and McDonnell Center for Space Sciences, Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri, 1981.
- B.A., Earth and Planetary Sciences, Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri, 1974.
- 2001-present: Program Lead: Geothermal Energy Development, Earth Science Division, LBNL.
- 1999-present: Group Leader: Center for Isotope Geochemistry, Earth Science Division, LBNL.
- 1995-2001: Group Leader: Environmental Measurements Laboratory, Earth Science Division, LBNL.
- 1991-present: Staff Scientist, Earth Science Division, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
- 1990-1991; 2000-present: Lecturer, Department of Earth and Planetary Science, UC Berkeley.
- 1990-1992: Asst. Research Geophysicist V, Department of Physics, Univ. of California, Berkeley.
- 1985-1990: Asst. Research Geophysicist I-IV, Department of Physics, Univ. of California, Berkeley.
- 1981-1985: Post Doctoral Research Assistant, Department of Physics, Univ. of California, Berkeley.
- 1969-1971: United States Army; Honorable Discharge, June, 1971.
- Outstanding Performance Award, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, 1997.
- Member, California Geothermal Energy Collaborative (CGEC) Steering Committee
- Co-Chair CGEC Geothermal Resource Committee
- Co-Chair DOE Geothermal Technologies Program Committee on Reservoir Creation for Enhanced Geothermal Systems
- Member: Safety Review Committee, LBNL (2000-2006).
- Member: Safety Committee, Chemical Hazards, Earth Science Division, LBNL (1999-2006).
- Lecturer, Department of Earth and Planetary Science, UC Berkeley.
- IGPP Proposal Review Committee: 1996, 1997, 1999, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2006.
- Chairman, IAEA Advisory Group Meeting: “State of the Art and Development Needs for Noble Gas Isotope Applications in Geothermal Reservoir Exploration and Monitoring”, Vienna, Austria, June, 2001.
- Co-chairman, Scientific Program Committee, Eighth International Conference on Geochronology, Cosmochronology, and Isotope Geology.
Active Research Projects
- Integrated Isotopic Studies of Geochemical Processes. Co-PI with Prof. D.J. DePaolo, Dept. of Geology and Geophysics, UC Berkeley and Drs. M.S. Conrad and John Christensen, Earth Science Division, LBNL. DoE Office of Energy Research, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, Engineering and Geosciences Division.
- Air-Derived Noble Gases In Sediments: Sites for Acquisition of Trapped Components. Co-PI with Prof. Tom Torgersen, Dept of Marine Sciences, University of Connecticut. DoE Office of Energy Research, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, Engineering and Geosciences Division.
- Development of Isotopic Techniques for Reservoir and Aquifer Characterization. PI, DoE Office of Energy Research, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, Engineering and Geosciences Division.
- International Partnership for Geothermal Technology (IPGT) Support and Collaborative Research on Chemical and Isotopic Signatures of High Temperature Geothermal Systems, Iceland. PI, DoE, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Office of Geothermal Technologies.
- Impact of Fluid Injection on Natural Isotopic Systems at EGS Sites. PI, DoE, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Office of Geothermal Technologies.
- Integrated Approach to Use Natural Chemical and Isotopic Tracers to Estimate Fracture Spacing and Surface Area in EGS Systems. Co-PI, DoE, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Office of Geothermal Technologies.
- Development of fluid injection strategies for optimizing steam production at The Geysers geothermal field, California. PI, PIER Research and Development Grant, California Energy Commission.