The South Dakota School of Mines & Technology is launching a Shale Research Institute with the help of Rapid City-based engineering consultant RESPEC.
The state Legislature earlier this year approved nearly half a million dollars to support the effort. The School of Mines says work will focus on a range of experiments related to energy production and the environment.
Officials also will be assessing the feasibility of what would be the nation's first underground shale research laboratory.
State Rep. David Lust says South Dakota is in a good position to advance research into shale formations. The School of Mines in Rapid City is equidistant from the Bakken, Mowry and Niobrara shale formations in the Upper Midwest.
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