November 16, 2012
By Scott Self
From left, Texas Tech Interim President Lawrence Schovanec, Apache Corp. President and COO Rodney Eichler, Texas Tech Chancellor Kent Hance, and Apache Corp. Vice President-Permian Region John Christmann.
Officials at Texas Tech and Apache Corp. have announced a $2 million donation to the university’s Whitacre College of Engineering that will establish the Apache Upstream Research Center in the new Petroleum Engineering Research Building.
“Apache Corp. is an industry leader and a great corporate partner,” said Kent Hance, chancellor of the Texas Tech University System. “Its commitment to the Permian Basin, environmentally responsible fracking and future petroleum engineers is unmatched. We thank them for their contribution to Texas Tech that is benefiting our research enterprise, faculty, and students.”
This center will be an important aspect of the new Petroleum Engineering Research Building’s laboratories, focused on the latest environmentally responsible fracturing techniques including horizontal well drilling, rock mechanics, the energy-water nexus, wellbore integrity, and well cementing. Research will be conducted in the center by faculty members from multiple engineering disciplines and will advance the leading edge of fracturing procedures and environmentally responsible practices.
“Apache and the entire industry rely on cutting-edge technology such as horizontal drilling in tight shale and it is vital that the next generation of petroleum engineers come prepared to use the most advanced levels of technology and innovation,” said John Christmann, vice president of the Permian region for Apache. “We hope this donation plays a role in helping the center to develop these bright young engineers at Texas Tech to their fullest.”
In addition, both undergraduate and graduate students will have the opportunity to apply new knowledge and innovations to their engineering studies as these advancements are discovered. This will build upon robust theoretical and practical education that Texas Tech engineers receive.
Apache’s gift is eligible for an additional $2 million of matching funds from the Texas Research Incentive Program, created by the state of Texas. Once matching funds are received, the funding will support equipment purchases and research projects in the fracturing techniques center.
Many members of the Apache Corp. executive staff attended the presentation ceremony.
The new $20 million Petroleum Engineering Research Building will house 40,000 square feet of formal teaching environments with hands-on applications and modern research facilities. Funding for the building was provided entirely through generous donor support during the Texas Tech University System’s $1 billion campaign, Vision and Tradition: The Campaign for Texas Tech.
Apache Corporation is a Houston-based oil and gas exploration and production company with operations in the United States, Canada, Egypt, the United Kingdom North Sea, Australia and Argentina. Apache posts announcements, operational updates, investor information and copies of all press releases on its website, www.apachecorp.com.
The Edward E. Whitacre Jr. College of Engineering has educated engineers to meet the technological needs of Texas, the nation and the world since 1925.
Approximately 4,300 undergraduate and 725 graduate students pursue bachelors, masters and doctoral degrees offered through eight academic departments: civil and environmental, chemical, computer science, electrical and computer, engineering technology, industrial, mechanical and petroleum.