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BioTiger

(Biological Enhancement of Hydrocarbon Extraction)

Savannah River National Laboratory

Contact SRNL About This Technology

BioTiger<sup>TM </sup>Microbes
BioTigerTM Microbes

<p>Tar Sands</p>

Tar Sands

Technology Marketing SummaryScientists at the Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) have discovered a new environmental biocatalyst for improving the recovery of hydrocarbons entrained in sediments utilizing a patented consortium of microbes known as BioTigerTM.  BioTigerTM comprises unique and balanced strains of natural bacteria that are especially suited to the task of destroying or otherwise mitigating polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and heavy metals.  It was used in the first-ever biological field treatment of mixed petroleum and radioactive waste, transforming it into low-level radioactive waste.  BioTigerTM addresses one of the most fundamental limitations of bioremediation-the viability of the bacteria under harsh environmental conditions including high acidity and low temperatures to perform well.  The use of BioTigerTM requires no material removal, aeration, or addition of fertilizers, although the process can be further accelerated by these techniques.Description

In addition to environmental cleanup uses, BiotigerTM shows significant promise for effectively increasing oil recovery from oil sands without added chemicals.  The microbes attach themselves to the oil sands, separating oil, making the separation step easier, resulting in more removed oil, and reduced energy costs.  Tar sands are mined and processed to generate oil similar to that pumped from conventional oil wells.  Current methods have caused concerns about the environmental impact, including concerns about the amount of water used in the process, energy costs to operate the systems, runoff from the tailings ponds, wastewater from the facilities, and chemical residues in the water left over from the extraction process.  Currently tar sands represent about 40 percent of Canada's oil production, and approximately 20 percent of U.S. crude oil and refined products come from Canada, with a substantial portion from tar sands.

Benefits
  • Uses naturally occurring microorganisms
  • negligible toxicity
  • promotes rapid hydrocarbon breakdown
  • provides for oil recovery from existing waste products
  • minimizes environmental impact
  • survives in harsh environments
  • degrades complex petroleum products, heavy metals, and radioactive waste
Applications and IndustriesThis technology exhibits properties that could be instrumental in the rapid reclamation of existing tailing ponds and potential recovery of significant amounts of bitumen currently discarded to the tailing ponds. There is potential for other oil recovery initiatives, including oil shale and other underground areas with oil deposits.  Research is currently being conducted for applications on contaminated seawater, beach sand, and estuary cleanup.More InformationU. S. Patent 7,472,747Patents and Patent Applications
ID Number
Title and Abstract
Primary Lab
Date
Patent 7,472,747
Patent
7,472,747
Biological enhancement of hydrocarbon extraction
A method of microbial enhanced oil recovery for recovering oil from an oil-bearing rock formation is provided. The methodology uses a consortium of bacteria including a mixture of surfactant producing bacteria and non-surfactant enzyme producing bacteria which may release hydrocarbons from bitumen containing sands. The described bioprocess can work with existing petroleum recovery protocols. The consortium microorganisms are also useful for treatment of above oil sands, ground waste tailings, subsurface oil recovery, and similar materials to enhance remediation and/or recovery of additional hydrocarbons from the materials.
Savannah River National Laboratory 01/06/2009
Issued
Patent 7,906,315
Patent
7,906,315
Surfactant biocatalyst for remediation of recalcitrant organics and heavy metals
Novel strains of isolated and purified bacteria have been identified which have the ability to degrade petroleum hydrocarbons including a variety of PAHs. Several isolates also exhibit the ability to produce a biosurfactant. The combination of the biosurfactant-producing ability along with the ability to degrade PAHs enhances the efficiency with which PAHs may be degraded. Additionally, the biosurfactant also provides an additional ability to bind heavy metal ions for removal from a soil or aquatic environment.
Savannah River National Laboratory 03/15/2011
Issued
Patent 7,915,027
Patent
7,915,027
Surfactant biocatalyst for remediation of recalcitrant organics and heavy metals
Novel strains of isolated and purified bacteria have been identified which have the ability to degrade petroleum hydrocarbons including a variety of PAHs. Several isolates also exhibit the ability to produce a biosurfactant. The combination of the biosurfactant-producing ability along with the ability to degrade PAHs enhances the efficiency with which PAHs may be degraded. Additionally, the biosurfactant also provides an additional ability to bind heavy metal ions for removal from a soil or aquatic environment.
Savannah River National Laboratory 03/29/2011
Issued
Patent 7,935,516
Patent
7,935,516
Surfactant biocatalyst for remediation of recalcitrant organics and heavy metals
Novel strains of isolated and purified bacteria have been identified which have the ability to degrade petroleum hydrocarbons including a variety of PAHs. Several isolates also exhibit the ability to produce a biosurfactant. The combination of the biosurfactant-producing ability along with the ability to degrade PAHs enhances the efficiency with which PAHs may be degraded. Additionally, the biosurfactant also provides an additional ability to bind heavy metal ions for removal from a soil or aquatic environment.
Savannah River National Laboratory 05/03/2011
Issued
Technology Status
Technology IDDevelopment StageAvailabilityPublishedLast Updated
SRNL-L9100-2010-00070-1Development - PatentedAvailable03/16/201103/16/2011

Contact SRNL About This Technology

To: Dale Haas, Commercialization Manager<dale.haas@srnl.doe.gov>