January 14, 2008 - Edmonton

Pipeline wear is a significant cost to industry – both in unplanned production outages and maintenance costs. The Alberta Research Council (ARC), 3M Canada and Alberta Advanced Education and Technology (AET) are teaming up to develop liners that prevent corrosion and erosion and prolong pipeline life.

“ARC is helping 3M develop the pipeline liners by lending our expertise in product testing and evaluation,” says John Wolodko, project leader at ARC. “To do this, we are building a large scale flow loop that will test the liners and evaluate their performance. This will give 3M the opportunity to try out different ideas and see which ones will work best for the oil sands industry.”

This collaborative project is part of a larger strategy for 3M as it expands its technical footprint in Alberta. Part of this strategy has included doubling their manpower over the past year and offering the oil and gas industry product and technology solutions across three platforms: worker safety, well completion and corrosion protection.

“As one of Canada’s fastest growing economies, Alberta plays a vital part in 3M’s strategic plan,” said Randy Frank, Laboratory Manager, 3M Canada Energy Markets. “This partnership allows 3M to leverage ARC’s expertise and world-class testing capabilities to tackle a serious issue in oil sands. Knowledge gained from this experience will allow 3M to explore opportunities for larger projects in the province.”

“Working with 3M is another example of our government’s successful strategy to encourage collaborative research benefitting Alberta, “says Doug Horner, Minister of Advanced Education and Technology. “This $800,000 project to enhance pipeline reliability and performance increases efficiency in a critical industry and ultimately contributes to our province’s growth.”
Construction of the flow loop lab and the development of the product concept will be done spring 2008. Then, phase two of the project – prototype design, fabrication and validation – will begin, and is expected to wrap up by the end of 2008. The $805,000 project is funded through 3M ($375,000), ARC ($180,000) and AET ($250,000).

About ARC
The Alberta Research Council Inc. delivers innovative science and technology solutions that meet the priorities of industry and government in Alberta and beyond. Established in 1921, ARC is wholly-owned by the Government of Alberta and incorporated as a not-for-profit corporation. ARC operates in five facilities throughout Alberta, serving the energy; life sciences, including agriculture, environment, forestry, and health and wellness; and manufacturing sectors.

About 3M Canada
Established in 1951, 3M Canada Company was one of the first international subsidiaries opened by 3M and remains one of the largest. 3M Canada’s head office and original manufacturing site is in London, Ontario where approximately 1,000 of the company’s 1,950 employees work. Other Ontario plants are located in Toronto, Brockville, and Perth with one in Morden, Manitoba. 3M has sales offices in major cities nationwide and a national service network to support customers.


For more information please contact:

John Wolodko
Group Leader, Polymers and Composites, Advanced Materials
Alberta Research Council Inc.
250 Karl Clark Road
Edmonton, AB, T6N 1E4
Phone : (780) 450-5407

Jodi Tauber
Communications Advisor
Alberta Research Council Inc.
Phone : (780) 450-5062

Corporate Communications Manager
3M Canada
Phone: (519) 452-6035