Hatch welcomes next step in Nsolv commercialization
Nsolv offers a cleaner, more economical solution to the operational and environmental challenges of heavy oil production. This made-in-Canada technology uses no water, reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 75 per cent, and produces more refined oil compared to traditional in situ extraction methods.
Since 2014, Nsolv has produced more than 100,000 barrels of partially upgraded oil at its pilot plant at Suncor’s Dover site near Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada. Hatch, a founding partner of Nsolv, was responsible for engineering and constructing the pilot project, and continues to provide financial, engineering, and technical support.
Earlier this month, Nsolv Corporation and Suncor Energy announced an agreement to further test and evaluate Nsolv’s solvent-based technology for potential commercial-scale deployment.
"This marks an important step in Nsolv's work with Suncor and in our journey towards commercialization," said Joe Kuhach, chief executive officer of Nsolv. "We are excited by the pilot results to date which were achieved with the support of one of Canada's leading energy companies, our shareholders, and our technical partners.” He adds, “the pilot has proven the technology and we look forward to the next phase of our development." As a proven technology, Nsolv is now primed for further partnerships, joint ventures and license agreements.
Commenting on this latest agreement, Hatch CEO John Bianchini stated, “We welcome this continuing partnership between Suncor and Nsolv in the evolution of this clean energy technology. Hatch is committed to the large-scale commercialization and adoption of Nsolv, which offers a sustainable solution to the challenges of heavy oil production.”
Suncor will continue to test Nsolv technology, which uses a solvent instead of steam for in situ bitumen extraction techniques, providing significant environmental and economic benefits over traditional Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) methods. With this recommitment, the pilot project will move towards optimization of the technology for implementation on a commercial scale.
More about Nsolv Technology
The Nsolv process uses the traditional horizontal well technology developed for steam assisted gravity drainage (SAGD), but does not use any water. Nsolv in-situ technology also reduces greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by over 75 per cent compared to current steam-based methods. The process warms solvent to a low temperature using very little natural gas, reducing the amount of energy required to remove oil from the reservoir. Nsolv leaves many heavy contaminants underground, leading to less waste and a partially upgraded, lighter oil on extraction. This oil requires less diluent for shipment to market, effectively allowing more product to be transported through existing pipelines. Nsolv’s lighter and more valuable oil, in combination with lower capital and operating costs, result in improved economic performance. Unlike other extraction methods, Nsolv is economically viable at a scale of 5,000 to 10,000 barrels per day.
Nsolv is a privately-owned Canadian, clean-tech energy company devoted to solving the operational and environmental problems of heavy oil extraction. With the support of its shareholders, Hatch Ltd., Enbridge Inc. and Nenniger Inc., the company has patented a warm solvent technology for in-situ projects that produces a higher quality oil product from hard to reach reservoirs for a fraction of the cost, all the while doing better for the environment. Hatch is a founding partner of Nsolv and provides financial, engineering and technical support. Enbridge, a leader in energy transportation and distribution, made its initial investment in the technology in 2006. Both Hatch and Enbridge are major equity partners and key influencers in Nsolv’s growth and development. For more information: www.nsolv.ca.