PRESS RELEASE: RPSEA Selects Projects for the 2008 Unconventional Resources Program

New Research Will Help Meet U.S. Energy Demand and Lower Costs for Consumers

SUGAR LAND, Texas--(April 9, 2009)--The Research Partnership to Secure Energy for America (RPSEA) announces nine proposals have been selected for negotiations leading to an award under the 2008 Unconventional Resources Program focused on increasing the supply of domestic natural gas and other petroleum resources.

"These nine projects build upon the 19 projects selected for the 2007 program to form an integrated research portfolio to provide the technology to enable the substantial domestic resource base of clean-burning unconventional natural gas to make an increasingly important contribution to the nation’s energy needs,” said RPSEA President C. Michael Ming. The Unconventional Resources Program is designed to bring the resources of America’s leading universities, research institutions and technology innovators to bear on the development of gas shales, tight gas sands and coalbed methane resources by reducing costs, increasing efficiency, improving safety and minimizing environmental impacts.

While awards under the RPSEA Unconventional Resources Program are open to any U.S.-based organization, most projects involve a team consisting of researchers along with producers or service companies that are in a position to evaluate and apply new technology. Each proposal must provide a minimum of 20% cost share, with up to 50% for field demonstration projects. The selected projects are:

Barnett and Appalachian Shale Water Management and Reuse Technologies

Project Leader: Gas Technology Institute
Additional Project Participants: The University of Texas at Austin, The Bureau of Economic Geology, Texerra, Geopure, Barnett Shale Water Conservation and Management Committee, Appalachian Shale Water Conservation and Management Committee

Novel Gas Isotope Interpretation Tools to Optimize Gas Shale Production

Project Leader: California Institute of Technology
Additional Project Participants: Devon Energy Corporation, BJ Services Company, GeoIsoChem Inc.

The Environmentally Friendly Drilling Systems Program

Project Leader: Houston Advanced Research Center
Additional Project Participants: Texas A&M University, Sam Houston State University, University of Arkansas, University of Colorado, Utah State University, University of Wyoming, West Virginia University, Argonne National Laboratory, Los Alamos National Laboratory, TerraPlatforms, LLC, the Environmentally Friendly Drilling Joint Industry Partnership, The Nature Conservancy, Natural Resources Defense Council, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority

Pretreatment and Water Management for Frac Water Reuse and Salt Production

Project Leader: GE Global Research
Additional Project Participants: STW Resources, Inc.

Stratigraphic Controls on Higher-Than-Average Permeability Zones in Tight-Gas Sands, Piceance Basin

Project Leader: Colorado School of Mines

Coupled Flow-Geomechanical-Geophysical-Geochemical (F3G) Analysis of Tight Gas Production

Project Leader: Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Additional Project Participants: Texas A&M University, Stanford University, Baker Hughes Inc., Unconventional Gas Resources, Inc.

Sustaining Fracture Area and Conductivity of Gas Shale Reservoirs for Enhancing Long-Term Production and Recovery

Project Leader: Texas Engineering Experiment Station/Texas A&M University System
Additional Project Participants: TerraTek a Schlumberger Company, Devon Energy Corporation, EnCana Oil & Gas USA, Pennsylvania General Energy Co.

Multiazimuth Seismic Diffraction Imaging for Fracture Characterization in Low-Permeability Gas Formations

Project Leader: Bureau of Economic Geology, The University of Texas at Austin
Additional Project Participants: The University of Texas at Austin, Bill Barrett Corporation

Evaluation of Fracture Systems and Stress Fields within the Marcellus Shale and Utica Shale and Characterization of Associated Water Disposal Reservoirs: Appalachian Basin

Project Leader: Bureau of Economic Geology, The University of Texas at Austin
Additional Project Participants: University of Pittsburgh, Chesapeake Energy Corporation, Jeter Field Service, RARE Technology, AscendGeo, AOA Geophysics, Inc., Austin Powder Company, Seismic Source
Funding for the projects is provided through the “Ultra-Deepwater and Unconventional Natural Gas and Other Petroleum Resources Research and Development Program” authorized by the Energy Policy Act of 2005. This program—funded from lease bonuses and royalties paid by industry to produce oil and gas on federal lands—is specifically designed to increase supply and reduce costs to consumers while enhancing the global leadership position of the United States in energy technology through the development of domestic intellectual capital. RPSEA is under contract with the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory to administer several elements of the program. RPSEA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit consortium with more than 145 members, including 25 of the nation's premier research universities, five national laboratories, other major research institutions, large and small energy producers and energy consumers. The mission of RPSEA, headquartered in Sugar Land, Texas, is to provide a stewardship role in ensuring the focused research, development and deployment of safe and environmentally responsible technology that can effectively deliver hydrocarbons from domestic resources to the citizens of the United States. Additional information can be found at
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Danette Mozisek
(281) 690-5513
Author: Danette Mozisek
Phone: (281) 690-5513
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