Biofilm Remediation of Hydraulic Fracturing Flowback Water in the Marcellus Shale

Award Information
Agency: Department of Energy
Branch: N/A
Contract: DE-FG02-11ER86481
Agency Tracking Number: 98148
Amount: $100,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Awards Year: 2011
Solitcitation Year: 2011
Solitcitation Topic Code: 28 a
Solitcitation Number: DE-FOA-0000413
Small Business Information
Frac Biologics, Inc.
225 Rosss Street, Sixth Floor, Pittsburgh, PA, 15219-2024
Duns: 965447654
Hubzone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 John Costerton
 (240) 574-1087
Business Contact
 James Post
Title: Mr.
Phone: (352) 213-1772
Research Institution
 The Allegheny-Singer Research Institute
 320 East North Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA, 15212-
 () -
 Domestic nonprofit research organization
Frac fluids are viscous solutions that are pumped under high pressure to fracture subsurface formations for recovery of natural gas. As it is pumped to the surface, the flowback water picks up large quantities of various contaminants that make it difficult to dispose or recycle. Though this water contains hazardous substances such as heavy metals (i.e. copper, lead, zinc, and cadmium), arsenic, selenium, and numerous organic compounds, it is often improperly disposed to local streams without little or no treatment. Frac Biologics preliminary experiments using Biofilm Technology to treat frac flowback water have shown that removal of heavy metals is feasible. The objective of the Phase I research is to isolate natural halophilic biofilm organisms that will cost effectively remove heavy metals, arsenic, selenium, and organic compounds. During Phase II, biofilm columns will be built to process frac flowback water and prove the effectiveness of the technology. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: Frac Biologics, Inc. was formed in 2009 to commercialize Biofilm Technology, specifically the remediation of contaminated water, such as acid mine drainage and frac flowback water. After biofilm columns are shown to effectively treat frac flowback water in Phase II research, the technology will be commercialized by scaling up to large-scale biofilm systems that can treat contaminated water on site

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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