Researchers at The University of Texas at Austin have developed a simple scaling theory to estimate gas production from hydraulically fractured wells in the Barnett Shale. The method is intended to help the energy industry accurately identify low‐ and high‐producing horizontal wells, as well as to model the rate at which production from the wells declines over time, known as the “decline curve.” For more, read the Cockrell School of Engineering press release.
The McCombs School of Business’ Energy Management and Innovation Center has created a new program to help students meet the challenges of today’s dynamic regulatory climate and evolving energy industry. The 18‐credit hour program, open to all undergraduate students, includes coursework in business, geoscience, petroleum operations and law, and a unique summer session that features guest speakers and energy site visits. Elective coursework also provides students with increased understanding of environmental issues, sustainable development, energy trading, and alternative energy solutions. Read more.
Under the leadership of Professor Eric van Oort, UT Austin’s Cockrell School of Engineering has launched three new hands‐on laboratories that will advance energy research and transform how students learn about oil and gas. As envisioned by Dr. van Oort, the labs will be a place where faculty and students in engineering and related disciplines can delve into the many challenges facing both onshore and offshore drilling operations. Read more.
The Energy Institute will host a screening of “Pandora’s Promise,” a controversial new film that examines several environmentalists’ and energy experts’ conversion from fiercely anti- to strongly pro-nuclear power. To learn more and view a trailer visit the film’s website and read a review in the Austin American-Statesman. [Read more…]
The University of Texas at Austin will provide technical support to local startup Applied Novel Devices under a $500,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) aimed at lowering the cost of high-efficiency silicon solar cells. [Read more…]
Researchers in UT Austin’s Materials Science Engineering Program have made a breakthrough in graphene growth that could spur dramatic improvements in the performance of flexible electronics, solar cells, batteries, transistors, aircraft wings and other applications of large-area graphene film, a strong, ultra-thin, all-carbon material that has exceptional electrical properties. For more, read an article on the Cockrell School of Engineering website.
By Ian Floyd for Reporting Texas and the Austin American-Statesman
UT Austin chemical engineering professor Benny Freeman has spearheaded leading-edge research on a new method for recycling fresh water used in hydraulic fracturing of shale to produce natural gas and oil. The process, which features a two-step membrane filtration system that removes oils, chemicals, salts and minerals, could reduce the amount of fresh water used in fracking by up to 50 percent. Read the entire article published in Reporting Texas and the Austin American-Statesman.
Experts Discuss Prospects in Emerging, Traditional Energy Sources at McCombs Conference
By Gary Rasp
While investment opportunities remain viable for established sources of energy such as oil and natural gas, the next ‘big thing’ could arise from the convergence of maturing technologies that yield products and services with end-use consumers in mind, suggested experts at a recent conference hosted by the McCombs School of Business. [Read more…]
By Gary Rasp
Nuclear engineers at The University of Texas at Austin received an infusion of funds recently from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) that will enable them to continue pioneering research in two distinct but related fields of study. [Read more…]