News | September 9, 2019

Sparx Engineering Introduces New Water Treatment Technology Via Spin-Off Company, Countertrace, LLC

Scalable & Environmentally Friendly Innovation A Realistic Solution for Hydraulic Fracturing

Houston, TX /PRNewswire/ - Sparx Engineering, a company with a 10-year track record of innovation, fixing and solving engineering challenges that improve efficiency, productivity and outcomes for its clients in a wide array of industries, has announced the creation of its first wholly-owned separate company, Countertrace, LLC. The new company's patent-pending technology to treat and optimize fluids for industrial purposes, such as hydraulic fracturing operations, was introduced at the Rice Alliance Energy and Clean Technology Venture Forum on September 11.

Countertrace's breakthrough technology, developed by Sparx' own team of scientists and engineers, is based on a unique polymer macroparticle that can be "programmed" to identify and selectively contain and remove contaminants from complex fluids allowing for reuse and/or disposal. Reusable macroparticle spheres, sized 1 mm - 10 mm in diameter, are covered in receptors that bind the targeted contaminant, signal the acquisition of the target via a color changing sensor and then is easily filtered for reclamation. Simply, the hollow plastic pellets grab and hold a contaminant just with their presence in the fluid. This technology reduces the amount of chemicals and water needed in the extraction process.

"With forecasts showing a doubling of oil production in the Permian Basin and surrounding areas over the next five years, water has emerged as the most critical variable in industrial operations in terms of both cost and risk, and our water management method provides a better, smarter and realistic solution," says Robert Hanes, PhD., head of Chemical Products and Services at Sparx. "Our technology gives companies, such as those in the oil & gas industry, a cost-effective and scalable process which is also environmentally friendly."

Countertrace Technology/ add one
Sparx' introduction of Countertrace at the Rice Alliance Forum signals that its solution to selectively containing and removing contaminants from complex fluids is market ready. Sparx has invested more than $2 million developing this technology since 2017 with the goal of producing a highly protected and valuable platform technology for multiple industries.

"Our focus has now moved to scaling our technology for bulk production to meet pending market needs," said Paul Hoopingarner, one of Sparx founding partners. "The effective and efficient sourcing, use and disposal of water is at a critical point in the oil and gas extraction process. We have a realistic solution and are now looking to identify strategic partners to ensure the technology is as effective in the field as our extensive laboratory testing and validation has shown to date."

About Sparx
Sparx Engineering is a licensed engineering design firm with a team of 40 engineers and scientists operating from a 16,000 square foot facility with a fully operational biochemistry laboratory as well as R&D and test equipment. It was founded in 2009 by Hoopingarner, David Headley and Rick Pettys. The company was recently named one of the Houston Fast 100 as well as one of Houston's Best Places to Work by the Houston Business Journal.

SOURCE: Sparx Engineering

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