Suncor confirms ongoing support for Marwayne RF XL pilot with Acceleware
Acceleware Ltd., a developer of technologies targeting low-cost and clean extraction of heavy oil and bitumen, including enabling the development of low-carbon initiatives, has announced that Suncor has confirmed its ongoing support for the commercial-scale radio frequency (RF) XL pilot project at Marwayne, first announced on May 20, 2020.
Suncor has committed to contribute up to $2 million of funding to support the Pilot, with the ability to provide input into design and test specifications prior to completion.
"We're continuously innovating to meet evolving energy needs while tackling pressing environmental challenges like climate change," said Sandy Martin, senior vice president, in situ, Suncor. "There isn't an easy or quick solution to transform to a low carbon energy future. It will take original thinking, collaboration and commitment - Acceleware's Marwayne Pilot is one example of how we're investing in the development of leading-edge technologies that have the potential to change the way the world generates and uses energy."
"In addition to the funding arrangement, Acceleware has benefited from Suncor's significant depth of expertise across all aspects of oil sands development and innovation, as well as their interest in proving this potentially game-changing RF XL technology," said Geoff Clark, CEO of Acceleware. "To date in 2020, the Company has made significant progress advancing the commercialization of RF XL. We look forward to keeping our stakeholders updated on progress and developments with the Pilot in 2021."
With the advancements achieved thus far in 2020, Acceleware has moved into the execution phase of the Pilot, which includes ordering long-lead equipment and materials. Currently, Acceleware estimates construction will begin as early as January 2021, followed by heating as early as March 2021. While the initial heating phase is planned for approximately six months, this period may be extended to allow Acceleware to capture additional information on the efficiency and operation of the technology. The cost of the Pilot is expected to be between $16 and $20 million, of which $16 million has been raised by the company. This includes $5.25 million in funding from Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC) and $5 million from Emissions Reduction Alberta (ERA) in addition to the $2 million provided by Suncor, and presumes the achievement of milestones required for receipt of such funding. Acceleware continues to seek additional sources of funding for the Pilot.
With a successful Pilot, numerous potential environmental benefits could be realized by oil sands producers deploying RF XL. Acceleware's RF XL electromagnetic heating technology generates near-zero GHG emissions given it can be powered entirely by renewable electricity, nuclear, or other clean power sources. In addition, RF XL eliminates the need for fresh water, and requires less land use, offering a cleaner and more sustainable solution to meet the world's growing demand for energy.