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Vol. 15, No. 38 Week of September 19, 2010
Providing coverage of Alaska and northern Canada's oil and gas industry

Arctic Directory: Nalco has significant role in Gulf oil spill cleanup

As reported May 12 by the University of Delaware’s online news source UDaily, Erik Frywald, who earned a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering at the University of Delaware in 1981, is chairman and CEO of Nalco, a company that is playing a significant role in the cleanup of the oil spill off the coast of Louisiana. On May 10 Nalco confirmed that the company is providing oil dispersants and support to BP and the responders dealing with the spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Frywald explained the technology in layman’s terms as “ a dispersant that breaks down oil into small enough particles that it becomes nutrition for the naturally occurring bacteria in the water.” The technology was initially approved for application to the water’s surface, but the product, a combination of surfactants and solvents, is now being tested for use directly on the wellhead. “That method has demonstrated to be effective, and we’re waiting for approval on it,” Frywald said. Given the magnitude of the problem in the Gulf, Nalco is rapidly ramping up production.



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