ASET Technology Alberta Spring 2017 - 11

depends on the ability to clear the blockage. Traditional
methods can involve risky, environmentally-harmful tools
and materials such as explosives and acid. Accordingly,
it's often simpler, safer, and more cost-effective to shut
down and drill elsewhere. That means two-thirds of many
wells' potential is never realized. Todd felt there had to be
a way of... doing things better.
"What if you could lower what is effectively a
relatively small battery down the deep hole," he asks.
"And by doing so, you could create a focused, highpowered event, clearing the blockage?" He smiles
and continues. "Sounds too simple, right? Well,
sometimes you don't have to look for a complicated
solution in order to do things better. Blue Spark offers
a sustainable solution that can remediate inactive or
poorly-performing wells around the world. We create
minimal environmental impact and employ a relatively
inexpensive approach by comparison to traditional
methods. Oh...and it works."
When asked to explain, he pauses, then says.
"Instead of a tanker filled with acid driving through
school zones, over agricultural lands, and across
indigenous reserves, all of which require special

permissions and hazmat protocols, just to try
something that is an iffy proposition, at best,
we show up with a battery and our Wireline
Applied Stimulation Pulsing (WASP®) and it
uses about as much energy as a household
lightbulb would if left on for three hours."
The look of disbelief makes him laugh
again. "It used to be that if you had a blocked
artery, your only chance was major surgery.
Then someone found a way to do things
better and angioplasty is now a common
procedure. Patients often return home the
next day. Think of this as angioplasty for
oil wells. You have a blockage, we lower our
WASP®, press a button, and presto! Clear
boreholes."
Todd also provides a simpler explanation,
one that appeals to our love of ice-cream.
Using the WASP® technology is like blowing
through a straw to clean away the fruit
that accumulates when you're drinking
a smoothie or a milkshake. And while
other wellsite remediation tools serve the
same purpose, they can prove expensive,
risky, environmentally harmful, and, often,
ineffective. Blue Spark's way blows down
the straw and cleans it out with neither
contamination nor safety issues.
Parker admits it hasn't been easy building
any business, let alone in the oil and gas
sector, during the worst recession in decades.
Blue Spark started creating prototypes in
2011, had a commercial application going in 2013, and
experienced steady growth through October of 2014, by
which time it had 30 wells on the go in a month. Then
the bottom fell out, leading to a significant drop-but
not a freefall. In fact, though 2015 and 2016 were lower
than previous years, they remained steady. How did
a nascent O&G firm avoid total devastation when so
many established players were swept away? "We could
tell this was going to be a deep, long downturn. If we
had remained a Canada-only company, we wouldn't
have weathered the storm," notes Todd. "Instead of
panicking, we saw this as an impetus to do business
elsewhere, so we looked to the U.S., the U.K., and
Continental Europe."
The plan worked and the Blue Spark team was
able to keep things going. More recently, business
has grown significantly and the first quarter of 2017
was the company's most successful to date at a time
when many Alberta enterprises are struggling merely
to stay afloat. This proves what this article set out to
demonstrate and that is that surviving a tough economy
is predicated on two key strengths: Organizational
culture and adaptability.

TECHNOLOGY ALBERTA | SPRING 2017 | 11



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of ASET Technology Alberta Spring 2017

Table of Contents
ASET Technology Alberta Spring 2017 - Cover1
ASET Technology Alberta Spring 2017 - Cover2
ASET Technology Alberta Spring 2017 - 3
ASET Technology Alberta Spring 2017 - Table of Contents
ASET Technology Alberta Spring 2017 - 5
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ASET Technology Alberta Spring 2017 - Cover3
ASET Technology Alberta Spring 2017 - Cover4
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https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/aset/ta_winter_2020
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https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/aset/ta_winter_2019
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https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/aset/ta_fall_2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/aset/ta_spring_2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/aset/ta_winter_2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/aset/ta_fall_2016
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/aset/ta_summer_2016
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https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/aset/ta_fall_2015
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