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UNCONVENTIONAL OIL 2017/ key applicants

Recent Inventions / Brief Overview

Unconventional oil types (oil shale, oil sands, heavy oil) play an increasingly considerable role in the worldwide fossil-fuel production process. However, more advanced technical solutions are required to extract such oil, and the majority of them are disclosed in the latest patent applications. On the date of publication of the proposed review of the leading participants in the patenting process in 2017, 1627 patent applications were selected, published by 466 applicants from 36 countries around the world and registered in 32 patent offices in the world.

The top 10 applicants list is provided below. Just as in the previous year, most of the patent documents were prepared by American companies Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. and ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company, with the former traditionally being the absolute leader. Among other companies, Saudi Arabian Oil Company, Dow Global Technologies, LLC and Schlumberger Technology Corporation have preserved their presence in the list of top 10 most productive innovators. Chinese PetroChina Company Limited considerably strengthened its position among the intellectual property holders in the revised technological sector. In total, representatives of five countries in the world appear in this year's list of leading applicants, two more than the previous year.

Top 10 applicants by the number of patent applications filed in 2017

StatusCountryNameAverage, RateTotal, 2018
CompanyUSHalliburton Energy Services, Inc.12.3184
CompanyUSExxonMobil Upstream Research Company13.977
CompanyCNPetroChina Company Limited12.376
CompanySASaudi Arabian Oil Company12.859
CompanyUSDow Global Technologies, LLC9.951
CompanyUSConocoPhilips Company11.936
CompanyUSSchlumberger Technology Corporation12.434
CompanyNLShell Internationale Research Maatschappij B.V.11.133
CompanyUSXyleco Inc.12.533

Source: Advanced Energy Technologies

Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. filed patent applications in 16 patent offices around the world, including the domestic offices of the leading petroleum-producing countries - Canadian Intellectual Property Office, National Intellectual Property Administration (China), Mexican Institute of Industrial Property, National Institute of Industrial Property (Brazil), IP Australia, Intellectual Property Corporation of Malaysia, Federal Service for Intellectual Property (Russia), United States Patent and Trademark Office, Norwegian Industrial Property Office, National Institute of Industrial Property (Argentina). Apart from Halliburton, Dow Global Technologies, LLC, Ecolab, Xyleco Inc., and ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company, applications were filed in ten or more patent offices.

Distribution of patent applications by patent offices around the world among the top 10 applicants

Source: Advanced Energy Technologies

CIPO(CA)-Canadian Intellectual Property Office; CNIPA(CN)-National Intellectual Property Administration; EAPO-Eurasian Patent Organization; EPO-European Patent Organization; ILPO(IL)-Israel Patent Office; IMPI(MX)-Mexican Institute of Industrial Property; INAPI(CL)-National Institute of Industrial Property; INPI(AR)-National Institute of Industrial Property; INPI(BR)-National Institute of Industrial Property (Brazil); INPI(FR)-National Institute of Industrial Property (France); IP Australia(AU)-IP Australia; IPO(GB)-Intellectual Property Office; IPO(IR)-Irish Patents Office; IPOS(SG)-Intellectual Property Office of Singapore; Indecopi(PE)-National Institute for the Defense of Competition of Peru; JPO(JP)-Industrial Property Office (Japan); KIPO(KR)-Korean Intellectual Property Office; MyIPO(MY)-Intellectual Property Corporation of Malaysia; NIPO(NO)-Norwegian Industrial Property Office; RPI(CR)-Register of Industrial Property (CostaRica); RVO(NL)-Netherlands Patent Office; Rospatent(RU)-Federal Service for Intellectual Property (Russia); TIPO(TW)-Taiwan Intellectual Property Office; USPTO(US)-United States Patent and Trademark Office; WIPO-World Intellectual Property Organization

The majority of the applicants mentioned in documents prepared their patent solutions in the form of various methods or different technical devices. Dow Global Technologies, LLC and Ecolab proposed novel compositions to the greatest extent.

The inventors of the applicants mentioned above aimed to resolve a broad spectrum of technological and ecological problems in their patent applications, which makes it difficult to identify their principal interests. PetroChina Company Limited emphasized the "Low efficiency of primary production" problem in nearly half of its applications; Schlumberger Technology Corporation turned to the "Exploration problems" most of all; Xyleco Inc. and Dow Global Technologies, LLC above all were concerned with the solution of problems related to Environmental balance and protection, and Energy, gas or water consumption. All of the applicants from the top 10 list, to varying degrees, approached the "Low efficiency of primary production" and "High capital or running costs in general" problems.

The picture of technological preferences of the top applicants of 2017 looks more expressive. For instance, Conoco Philips Company, Halliburton Energy Services, Inc., PetroChina Company Limited, and Schlumberger Technology Corporation the majority of their applications dedicated to the perfection of Steam injection technology. Ecolab, just as Dow Global Technologies, LLC - to Chemical stimulation technologies. Xyleco Inc. was, to the greatest extent, focused on the fields of Treatment and refinement, and Waste processing. Shell Internationale Research Maatschappij B.V. in a number of its inventions turned to Reservoir permeability improvement and extraction.

Technological elements of the top 10 applicants

Source: Advanced Energy Technologies

CS-Chemical stimulation; DAW-Drilling and well elements; DDH-Directional drilling or hydraulic fracturing; GWF-Gas injection or water flooding; ISC-In-situ combustion; OU-Other unclassified; RPIE-Reservoir permeability improvement and extraction; SEI-Surface exploration and infrastructure; STI-Steam injection; SUM-Surface or underground mining; TR-Treatment and refinement; UAM-Undefined activation method; URE-Underground reservoir exploration; UTR-Uncommon thermal recovery; WP-Waste processing

Some examples of the prominent patent documents that were published in 2017 and may be of professional interest are provided below:

- Method and apparatus for autonomous downhole fluid selection with pathway dependent resistance system/A:AU2017216582A1/AU2017216581A1/AU2017216580A1;
by Halliburton Energy Services, Inc.;

- System and method for load control with diffusion combustion in a stoichiometric exhaust gas recirculation gas turbine system/A:AU2013337647A8;
- Stoichiometric combustion control for gas turbine system with exhaust gas recirculation/A:AU2017248415A1;
- System and method for oxidant compression in a stoichiometric exhaust gas recirculation gas turbine system/A:AU2017261468A1;
用于在低排放涡轮机系统中捕获二氧化碳和发电的系统和方法 (Systems and methods for carbon dioxide capture and power generation in low emission turbine systems)/A:CN107401455A,
by ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company;

- 用于稠细粒尾矿脱水操作的分散和调节技术 (Dispersion and conditioning techniques for thick fine tailings dewatering operations)/A:CN107398093A,
by company SUNCOR ENERGY INC.;

- Processing Materials/A:AU2017203623A1, by Xyleco, Inc.;

- Elastomeric Materials/A:US20170370174A1, by SCHLUMBERGER TECHNOLOGY CORP;

- 用于烃转化过程中的混合的方法 (Method for mixing in a hydrocarbon conversion process)/A:CN107427792A, by SAUDI ARABIAN OIL COMPANY;

- 用于具有排气再循环的燃气涡轮机系统的燃烧控制的方法和系统 (Method and system for combustion control for gas turbine system with exhaust gas recirculation)/A:CN107076024A, by Exxonmobil Upstream Res Co.

More detailed information on the methodology as well as on the results of patent researches in the most important fields of contemporary energy industry can be found at Advanced Energy Technologies.