The Avatar 2022 Accelerator represents the energy industry’s firm commitment to shaping the energy transition by supporting emerging technologies and future leaders. The 2022 cohort will work through a rigorous 20-week co-development process, supported by UCalgary and SAIT, with the final deliverable being an investable energy transition technology that will play a role in helping the industry achieve its net-zero targets.
As stated in the International Energy Agency’s Net Zero by 2050 analysis, half the technology required to reach net-zero emissions does not yet exist – and more than $4T annually needs to be invested to new energy technologies. Through this ground-breaking co-development model, where the ideas for technologies and processes come from within the industry, the energy sector will build the solutions capable of reaching net-zero emissions by 2050.
The following 13 transformational projects generated in the Avatar Program have been selected for inclusion in the Accelerator:
- GOAT: 3rd generation carbon capture technology that can be used for point source emissions.
- BlueMorph: Re-imagined water treatment process enabling new carbon capture opportunities for industrial emitters.
- Rockstore: Accelerated rock mineralization technology for permanent carbon storage.
- Vivent Bioprocess: Bio-technology that converts methane emissions.
- Duat Bioreactors: Subsurface renewable natural gas technology.
- TemCap: Membrane technology to reduce GHG intensity of stagnant bodies of water.
- PaveWatt: Piezoelectrical power generating technology.
- Connect: EV charging user data technology.
- Ethox: Renewable solvent & hydrocarbon production technology.
- BOR3AL: Blockchain technology for carbon offset markets.
- Carbon38: Steel replacement technology using bitumen.
- CO2Brew: Using everyone’s favourite drink to recycle carbon
- GreenBox: GreenBox leverages existing activity of operations personnel, personal gas monitors, and UWB sensors to precisely detect fugitive emissions at oil and gas facilities
This co-development process complements other industry leading emissions reductions initiatives such as Canadian Oil Sands Innovation Alliance (COSIA), Clean Resource Innovation Network (CRIN) and Oil Sands Pathways to Net Zero Alliance. It represents a novel and bold step forward in the approach to developing net zero solutions by incorporating the nimbleness of a start-up within the framework of a large company, to deliver needed technologies faster, simpler and cheaper than has been done before.
These 13 projects have been sponsored to the accelerator by the following energy and technology companies:
- Cenovus Energy
- TC Energy
- Whitecap Resources
- Hitachi Vantara
- Shaw Communications
- Fluor Canada
- Spartan Controls
- Modern West Advisory
The Avatar Accelerator runs until October 27th, 2022, with the successful companies given an opportunity to be further capitalized for scale by the Avatar Innovations investment vehicle, Avatar Ventures.
“The CarbonTech Accelerator supercharges the technology development process. It helps provide the solutions required to propel the energy transition and bring us to net zero, while demonstrating global leadership and creating economic prosperity for Canadians.”
– Martha Hall Findlay, Chief Climate Officer, Suncor
“By supporting programs like AVATAR, we’re empowering our people to collaborate with emerging innovators across our industry and to be the catalyst for change by developing new solutions for our shared energy future. I’m inspired by the progress of our 2022 Avatar Program Cohort – it’s their bold, disruptive ideas that will continue to lead us forward.”
– Chris Foster, Chief Innovation Officer, TC Energy
Advancing technologies is critical for Cenovus, and our industry, to reduce emissions now and achieve our longer-term net zero ambitions. And by collaborating, we can get there faster. I’m looking forward to working with these innovative companies and seeing what we can do together.”
– Anamika Mukherjee, Director Innovation Gateway, Cenovus
“Progressing to a reliable and affordable lower carbon economy will involve being inclusive of all forms of energy and electrification – by bringing together bright innovative minds as Avatar has, this will advance us on the path to diversify our future energy needs.”
– Grant Fagerheim, CEO, Whitecap Resources
“Companies and communities must collaborate now to create new solutions that will accelerate the energy transition and transform future generations. Co-creation is core to Hitachi Vantara and we are committed to delivering economic, social and environmental value by partnering with innovators and industry leaders through programs like Avatar Accelerator.”
– Frank Antonysamy, Chief Technology Officer, Hitachi Vantara
“Avatar’s CarbonTech Accelerator program is an excellent example of the change and innovation that can be achieved in the energy sector through broad collaboration among several different industries. We understand firsthand how transformative next-generation networks will be in shaping the development of the next-generation technology and are proud to offer our support and expertise to help propel the energy sector towards net-zero emissions by 2050”
– Chethan Lakshman, VP, External Affairs, Shaw
“Key to shaping the future of the energy industry is harnessing the creativity and innovative minds of young engineers. Programs like Avatar provide the linkages and the platform for these future leaders to come together, ask questions, challenge norms, cultivate new ideas and redefine success.”
– Mark Brown, General Manager, Fluor Canada
“Avatar is another example of academia and industry working together to find solutions to complex problems. We need only look back at the power of AOSTRA (Alberta Oilsands Technology & Research Authority) to understand the value that can be unlocked by these partnerships.”
– William Ghali, Vice-President, Research, University of Calgary
“SAIT is proud to play a role in this catalytic accelerator program. The people, ideas, and ventures that will manifest from the AVATAR program will transform the energy sector and rewrite the global energy landscape.”
– Jim Gibson, Executive Director, SAIT School for Advanced Digital Technology
“Innovate Calgary is thrilled to join Avatar in welcoming their next accelerator cohort to the Energy Transition Centre. Participants of this program will benefit from the established relationship between the University of Calgary and Avatar Innovations to help mature early-stage technology developed in the Ignite program into tangible, real-world solutions for Alberta’s evolving energy sector.”
– John Wilson, CEO, Innovate Calgary