GE Canada invites the best global minds to take the GHG ecomagination Innovation Challenge.

Canada has the third largest oil reserves in the world, 97% or approximately 168 billion barrels of oil are located in Alberta's oil sands. Interest in the oil sands dates back to the late 1800's, with the first significant production occurring in the 1960's.

The key challenge of oil sands relates to the separation of bitumen (heavy oil that is too thick to flow without heat or dilution) from a mixture of sand, clay and water. Technology has helped oil sands producers overcome this challenge, and today the oil sands produces approximately 1.9 billion barrels of oil each year, which is expected to grow to 3.8 billion barrels by 2022. In recent years, the oil sands industry has come under increasing scrutiny regarding GHG emissions and environmental impact.

This challenge seeks to address two of the biggest opportunities to reduce GHG emissions in Canada's oil sands: higher value use of low grade heat and improved efficiency of steam generation. We will be awarding a total of CAD $1 million in development grants and cash prizes to develop and commercialize proposed solutions and participants will be eligible to become a supplier or contractor to GE on ongoing projects.

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Topic I: Higher Value Uses of Low Grade Heat

Topic I aims to create new uses for low grade heat resulting from oil sands production, thereby utilizing a by-product that is typically wasted.

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Topic II: Improved Efficiency of Steam Generation

Topic II seeks to improve the efficiency and thereby reduce the GHG emissions of once through steam generator (OTSG) systems, improving the environmental impact of the process.