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Tapping Crude Oil: Designing CO2 thickeners continues at Pitt through $2.4 million ARPA-E grant


Contact: B. Rose Huber

412-624-4356 (office); 412-328-6008 (cell); rhuber@pitt.edu]

PITTSBURGH  (February 12, 2013) ... Tapping crude oil more efficiently continues to be the focus of University of Pittsburgh engineers, who have received a $2.4-million grant from the United States Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E). 

This award-in conjunction with a  $1.2 million U.S. Department of Energy NETL (National Energy Technology Laboratory) grant  awarded in October 2012-aims to increase the amount of oil produced in western and southern states through use of carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) flooding, a process in which CO 2  is injected into an oil reservoir for extraction. 

The project is headed by  Eric Beckman, PhD , George M. Bevier Professor of Engineering and codirector of the Mascaro Center for Sustainable Innovation at Pitt; and  Robert Enick, PhD , NETL Regional University Alliance Faculty Researcher and Bayer Professor in the Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering, both within Pitt's Swanson School of Engineering. 

"There's a wide market for a new type of CO 2  thickener that is more efficient and affordable," said Beckman. "And CO 2  is an ideal candidate for oil extraction given its ability to push and dissolve oil from underground layers of rock."

Read the full news release here.


Contact: B. Rose Huber