University of Idaho - I Banner
A student works at a computer


U of I's web-based retention and advising tool provides an efficient way to guide and support students on their road to graduation. Login to VandalStar.

Tom Wood

Tom Wood

Associate Professor


CAES 264



Mailing Address

CAES 264
995 MK Simpson Boulevard
Idaho Falls, ID 83401

  • Ph.D., Mining Engineering-Metallurgy, 2005—University of Idaho
  • M.S., Geological Engineering, 1987—Washington State University
  • B.S., Geophysics, 1981—Western Washington University

  • Physics of Unsaturated Flow in Fractured Rocks
  • Impacts to Water Resources from Unconventional Fuels Development
  • Nuclear and Hazardous Waste Site Characterization and Cleanup
  • Geothermal Systems
  • Ground Water Impacts from Hydro Fracking
  • Hydrogeology of the Snake River Plain
  • Ground Water Resource Evaluation

  • Huang, H. and T.R. Wood, (2012), "An integrated experimental and modeling study of episodic air-water two-phase flow in fractures and fracture networks", 1499877, 2012 Fall Meeting, AGU, San Francisco, Calif., 3-7 Dec.
  • Huang, H., P. Meakin and T.R. Wood (2013), "Simulations of coupled hydrocarbon fluid generation, expulsion and fracturing of oil shale subject to in situ retorting", SPE, in preparation.
  • Wood, T.R., C. Forsberg and M. McKellar, "Nuclear-Renewables-Oil Shale Hybrid Energy System", 32nd Oil Shale Symposium, October 15-18, 2012, Colorado School of Mines, Golden, Colorado.
  • Huang, H., T.R. Wood, E. Mattson, C. Palmer, M. Lin, C. Fang, W. Meurer and N. Hoda, 2012, "Mechanistic modeling of pre-pyrolysis fracturing of oil shale due to thermal stress", 32nd Oil Shale Symposium, October 17 2012, Golden, CO.
  • Wood, T.R., Hai Huang, Carl D. Palmer and Earl D. Mattson, 2010, "Simulation of Impacts of Oil Shale Retorting on Groundwater Quality", 30th Oil Shale Symposium, October 18-22, 2010, Colorado School of Mines, Golden, Colorado.
  • Wood, T. R., M. J. Nicholl and R. J. Glass "Influence of fracture intersections under unsaturated, low flow conditions", Water Resources Research, VOL. 41, W04017, doi:10.1029/2004WR003281, April 2005.
  • Wood, T. R., R. J. Glass, T. R. McJunkin, R. K. Podgorney, R. A. Laviolette, K. S. Noah, D. L. Stoner, R. C. Starr, and K. Baker, "Unsaturated Flow Through a Small Fracture-Matrix Network: Part 1, Experimental Observations," Vadose Zone Journal 2004 3: 90-100.
  • Wood, T. R., M. J. Nicholl, and R. J. Glass, Fracture intersections as integrators for unsaturated flow, Geophys. Res. Lett., 29(24), 2191, doi:10.1029/2002GL015551, 2002.

  • Geothermometry Mapping of Deep Hydrothermal Reservoirs in Southeastern Idaho
    This is an interdisciplinary, collaborative, tentatively funded research project to evaluate the geothermal resources of the Snake River Plain in southeastern Idaho. We propose to apply advanced simulation tools coupling temperature-dependent mineral and isotopic equilibria with mixing models that account for processes such as boiling and dilution with shallow groundwater that could affect calculated temperatures of deep thermal waters. This will be calibrated with both existing data (e.g., Geothermal Data Repository, National Geothermal Data System, and the Idaho Geologic Survey) and new data collected as part of this study to develop a geothermometry based temperature map of deep geothermal potential for southeastern Idaho. This project is a collaboration including the Idaho National Laboratory (INL), the three Idaho universities through Idaho’s Center for Advanced Energy Studies (CAES) and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL). This work will build on and extend work on other geothermal geothermometry projects in eastern Oregon and Nevada.
  • Aquifer Impacts from Hydraulic Fracturing
    This is a collaborative research project with the INL and the Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology. Water needed for energy developments throughout the arid Mountain West of North America may limit the Nation’s ability to address energy security issues. One of the most important, rapidly expanding, developments of fossil fuel resources in the U.S. is the Bakken Formation of eastern Montana and western North Dakota. "Fracking" requires two to five million gallons of water to fracture one horizontal well. As development of oil and gas in the Bakken formation moves westward, concerns are increasing that artesian aquifers in Eastern Montana, which have historically supported grazing and agriculture, may be impacted. This project will evaluate the water needed for Bakken development in Eastern Montana, characterize the groundwater resources, identify key areas where development may be water limited and develop an approach for optimizing water usage. By incorporating the impacts from water consumption (both spatially and temporally) into the design of drilling plans through an optimization approach, the negative water impacts associated with energy development can be reduced to manageable levels.
  • Perched Water Characterization – A Landfill in Southeastern Idaho
    A Landfill in southeastern Idaho is situated on the northwestern edge of the Eastern Snake River Plain overlying the transition zone between Tertiary and Quaternary volcanic rocks and unconsolidated sedimentary materials of the plain. This complex geologic environment is host to an equally complex hydrologic system. A nearby canal and focused recharge from snowmelt and spring runoff have created at least two perched water bodies beneath the landfill. Early analysis of water levels, drilling logs and geochemistry were used to distinguish between subaquifers. Subsequent well drilling and testing has confirmed the preliminary investigation. Ongoing work is ensuring that the ground water monitoring network is adequate to meet requirements for municipal solid waste landfills in Idaho.


Department of Geological Sciences

Physical Address:
McClure Hall 203

Mailing Address:
875 Perimeter Drive, MS 3022
Moscow, ID 83844-3022

Phone: 208-885-6192


Web: Geological Sciences