Millions of gallons of fracturing fluids, which contains various harmful chemical additives, are used in hydraulic fracturing operations. The Canadian unconventional gas industry has begun the transition toward the use of “green” additives for responsible production and public confidence. This project, supported by Mitacs Accelerate Program, Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP), BC Oil and Gas Commission (BC OGC), and BC Oil and Gas Research and Innovation Society (BC OGRIS), was aimed to develop a chemical hazard assessment framework for selecting low-toxicity additives in hydraulic fracturing operations. The existing oil and gas field chemical hazard assessment methodologies were comprehensively reviewed, and the advantages and limitations of different methodologies were also identified. Based on the review results, a new framework, named hydraulic fracturing fluid greenness assessment system (HyFFGAS), was developed in the first phase of this project. In the second phase, HyFFGAS was used to assess the chemical hazards of representative additives used in hydraulic fracturing operations in BC. Several modifications and improvements were made on HyFFGAS by incorporating the features of other industrial chemical hazard assessment systems. The outcome of this project can facilitate the unconventional gas industry in identifying the current chemical hazard baseline performance and selecting chemicals that have low environmental and human health effects.

Project Team

  • Tim Hurley
  • Gyan Chhipi Shrestha
  • Guangji Hu
  • James Hager
  • Tianyi Liu
  • Manjot Kaur
  • Haroon M. Rachid

Collaborators


Aim of this research was to develop pathways in enhancing the productivity and efficiency of the CLT job delivery mechanism and manufacturing system. Under this, the deficiencies and drawbacks of the existing processes was identified through a comprehensive work study. The process parameters and performance indicators were defined to develop a generalizable scheduling model to represent CLT production process and delivery system. The Life Cycle Management Laboratory partnered with Structurlam to develop the scheduling model, an Excel-based scheduling tool and perform a case study demonstration. The project was funded by Structurlam and Mitacs Accelerate Program. The developed scheduling tool provided process efficiency enhancement due to the optimum schedule sequence of panel manufacturing, defining the best production strategy to match growing CLT panel demands. Additionally, the scheduling model minimizes unnecessary panel shuffling time and intermediate rearranging, optimizing panel load and assembly.

Project Team

  • Bruno Carneiro
  • Manjot Kaur
  • Rukmal Liyanage

Collaborators

Media

British Columbia is gifted with abundant unconventional natural gas resources. The combined use of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing technologies enables the economically feasible extraction of unconventional gas from low-permeable formations such as shale and tight sands. Millions of gallons of fracturing fluids are used in a single hydraulic fracturing operation. Not only fracturing fluid uses a large volume of water, but also contains various toxic chemical compounds. This production process has triggered extensive public concerns over the environmental impacts of water resource consumption and potential aquatic ecosystem contamination. Supported by Mitacs Accelerate Program and partnered with Secure Energy Inc. and BC Oil and Gas Commission, the LCML has conducted a cluster of research projects to help the unconventional gas industry achieve more sustainable production. The research cluster consists of projects focusing on life-cycle water use assessment, ecological risk assessment of flowback water storage, and chemical hazard mitigation in fracturing fluids. A number of frameworks have been developed and validated by the partners to facilitate more environmentally friendly unconventional gas production in BC.

Project Team

  • Himani Gandhi
  • Kelsey McAuliff
  • Guangji Hu

Collaborators