Currently there are 9.8 million unemployed Americans in
"Our country has always been a nation of innovators - pushing the limits of technology to effect positive change both at home and abroad. In the energy sector in particular, innovation is the life blood of progress. The science and engineering behind these operations is astounding and so are the innovators - forging new frontiers of American engineering," said Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources Chairman
Witnesses at the hearing spoke about specific innovations that are fundamentally transforming the way we harness our energy resources leading to more efficient, affordable energy and job creation.
"Today, ATK is developing a suite of energy-related tools that leverages our advanced air-breathing hypersonic and solid rocket motor technologies. We are applying our experience in hypersonic research and development to create technologies for down-hole steam generation aimed at producing heavy oil, found in the western half of the continental
ATK's tool is highly versatile and can be used to stimulate new, existing or underperforming wells, either as an augmentation to or instead of current hydraulic fracturing procedures. Field demonstrations confirm its utility in oil, gas, and geothermal wells, with application in both vertical and horizontal wells.
The benefits of ATK's well stimulation tool directly addresses many of the most pressing problems facing the current hydro-fracking process. First, the tool uses little or no water in the performance of the stimulation. Second, ATK's propellant stimulation procedure needs no chemicals or proppant to enhance the flow of oil and natural gas. Finally, ATK's well stimulation tool is less expensive to operate relative to other hydraulic-related stimulation technology."
"Innovation is critical to each of these endeavors, regardless of whether one is looking to the conventional, unconventional or deepwater markets. The technology needed is complex and interdisciplinary, requiring advances in materials science, mechanical engineering, electronics, fiber optics, communications, data acquisition, modeling, and analytics. In materials research alone we have labs dedicated to metallurgy, composites, elastomers, fluids and nanotechnology.
The human capital and physical infrastructure needed to support this pace of product development are enormous.
"What can the government do? As an overall goal, government needs to embrace innovation and help propel growth. It must permit state-of-the-art business community and a skilled and prepared workforce to thrive by making sure that it does not discourage creativity, research, and commercial application of American innovations.
We must do a better job of striking a regulatory balance that ensures that folks out there who see opportunities to invent a better way to do something or create a new market have the leeway and support they need to make that happen. Overly burdensome, complicated, and redundant regulations make it impossible to truly capitalize on the energy renaissance - and inhibit development of long-term plans for growth and success."
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