GE AND STATOIL ANNOUNCE WINNERS OF OPEN INNOVATION CHALLENGE

Posted: Monday 22nd February 2016

Powering Collaboration is a joint technology-focused program from GE and Statoil, intended to accelerate the development of more environmentally and economically sustainable energy solutions.

GE and Statoil have announced the four winners of their Open Innovation Challenge, designed to utilize crowd sourcing to find solutions that reduce fresh water in shale oil and gas production.

GE and Statoil recognize that managing water, as a precious natural resource, represents one of the greatest challenges facing the onshore oil and gas industry. Within the industry, water management costs vary between 10-30%. Reducing the amount of water can prove cost-effective by lowering transport and energy costs but is equally beneficial for the environment and local communities.

“A focus on technology helped to unlock the shale revolution. Its intense innovation now shared across industries and between companies will ensure shale development continues in the most sustainable, responsible way possible,” said Lorenzo Simonelli, CEO of GE Oil & Gas. “The diversity of solutions and sheer volume of submissions we received show the immense talent and creativity gained.”

“We need to continue to invent new, commercial technologies and models to increase margins, and at the same time reduce our carbon footprint. We know that we cannot do this alone – that is why our partnership with GE is also about triggering broader collaboration within and beyond our industry”, Elisabeth Birkeland Kvalheim, Chief Technology Officer at Statoil said. “The water challenge is a great example of how Statoil and GE, together with the winners, can fast track promising solutions to the market and take an active role in transforming the future of the oil and gas industry.”

Businesses, institutions, and individuals were invited to submit proposals for new solutions to both reduce fresh water usage as well as treat and reuse water from shale production activities – while improving operational productivity.

The Challenge received over 100 submissions from across the globe, with 23 countries represented. Of these, four winners were selected based on the degree of innovation, technically feasibility and commercial viability of their proposals. Each winner will be awarded an initial cash prize of $25,000 USD.

Going forward, a discretionary funding pool of $375,000 USD is earmarked for co-development activities to be decided based on a more in-depth evaluation of winning proposals.

One of the winners, Anthony Duong, Ph.D., a research scientist at Columbus’ Battelle Memorial Institute, commented: “Open innovation strengthens relationships and bolsters entire industries. We saw a great benefit from applying our expertise in material science to the oil and gas industry, helping to offset the challenging economic realities producers are now facing.”




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