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Efforts To Improve Fracking Underway At SwRI

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SAN ANTONIO -- Fracking or hydraulic fracturing as it's known first took place in the United States in 1949. Since then the technology has been used to drill more than two million oil and natural gas wells.

And according to the US Department of Energy close to 95 percent of all new wells are fracked. But the process doesn't come without controversy.

The possibility that the high pressure process could cause earthquakes along with what to do with the wastewater are just of few of the concerns some have brought up. But now some new technology is being developed that could make fracking more effecient and possibly less controversial. San Antonio's Southwest Research Institute is currently working on technology that would replace 80 percent of the million of gallons of water used to frack each well with natural gas foam.

This is the 3rd year of project development and according to the Institute's engineers it's currently at a technology readiness level of 4 out of 10. That means it's been successfully lab tested and the next step is to get it field tested.

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