Our Innovation Analysts recently looked into emerging technologies and up-and-coming startups working on innovative solutions for the energy industry. As there is a large number of startups working on a wide variety of solutions, we want to share our insights with you. This time, you will discover 5 promising oil spill cleanup solutions.
Heat Map: 5 Top Oil Spill Cleanup Solutions
Using our StartUs Insights Discovery Platform, covering 1.379.000+ startups & scaleups globally, we looked at innovation in the field of oil spills and environmental safety. For this research, we identified 172 relevant solutions and picked 5 to showcase below. These companies were chosen based on a data-driven startup scouting approach, taking into account factors such as location, founding year, and relevance of technology, among others. Depending on your specific criteria, the top picks might look entirely different.
The Global Startup Heat Map below highlights 5 startups & scaleups developing oil spill management solutions. Moreover, the Heat Map reveals regions that observe a high startup activity and illustrates the geographic distribution of all 172 companies we analyzed for this specific topic.
SkyScape – Emergency Response Drones
The use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) enables conducting shoreline visual monitoring and assessments quickly in case of oil spills. The video footage from the drones allows for prompt preliminary survey assessments and an examination of oil response equipment condition. UAVs eliminate safety concerns for human workers, ensuring the continuous monitoring of incidents and cleanup efforts.
SkyScape is a US-based aerospace scaleup providing its UAV solution, OSCAR – Oil Spill Cleanup And Response System. OSCAR helps rapidly detect and report liquid petrochemical products on water. This system includes everything necessary for remote field operations, including airborne data acquisition, real-time data viewing, and one-click report generation. Startups are working on robotic systems that save time and costs when managing oil spills.
BioCure – Bioremediation Solutions
Bioremediation refers to the use of specific microorganisms or plants to metabolize and remove harmful substances from the target media, such as soil. Recently, a special type of cultured bacteria is found to be useful for cleaning up oil spills. The bacteria increases the rate of polycyclic-aromatic-hydrocarbon (PAH) degradation in relatively undegraded oil by a factor of 2, and of alkanes by a factor of 5, relative to the controls. Bioremediation is also less labor-intensive, more affordable, and averts chemical or mechanical damages.
BioCure is a Georgia-based startup developing bioremediation products for oil spill cleanups. The startup’s portfolio includes cultured bacteria that consume oil by converting them into harmless water and carbon dioxide (CO2) through bio-dispersion and assimilation processes. The startup further uses indigenous oil-oxidizing bacterial cultures to reduce the total petroleum hydrocarbon (TPH) levels at spill sites from 600 ppm to 25 ppm. As a result, the spill site is able to regain vegetation and restore itself to its natural condition.
Test1 – Foam Absorbents
Absorbents are materials that absorb oil into their matrix by capillary action and hold onto it. These typically utilize both organic and non-organic materials. Among other absorbents, hydrophobic polyurethane foams are promising for the application of oil spill recovery. The foam fills the pores with oil and only absorbs the oil in the polymer regions. Further, these foams are capable of absorbing large quantities of hydrocarbons with a small surface area. Their compact size also makes them effective in any geographical area, which is one of the reasons for foam absorbents gaining more traction in the industry.
Italian scaleup Test1 works on absorbent foams that speed up the oil spill recovery process. Test1’s patented oil absorbent technology – FoamFlex200, is an open-cell oleophilic polyurethane foam with a hydrophobic effect greater than 95%. This allows the intact recovery of spilled hydrocarbons with less than 5% water absorption. The hydrophobic effect eliminates the unnecessary cost of water disposal in oil spill cleanups. Moreover, the startup’s absorbent foams are reusable, which significantly saves costs for cleanup efforts.
Orbital EOS – Satellite Monitoring
Radar satellites obtain accurate information on the location, extent, direction, and magnitude of marine oil spills. This information aids clean-up operations while also helping save marine ecosystems. Satellites also enable damage assessment and help identify the cause of the spills. Using radar satellites, governments and oil companies are able to actively monitor, detect, and react to oil spills – before they become ecological disasters.
Orbital EOS is a Spanish startup that offers EOS Viewer, a satellite monitoring solution for oil spills. The startup delivers a comprehensive, reliable, and user-friendly solution for oil spill monitoring with the help of a network of radar and optical earth observation satellites. The startup also offers EOS Viewer as a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platform to promote proactive and cost-efficient surveillance of energy assets, especially for remote locations.
BMG Intepco – Biomicrogels
Biomicrogels are nano-scale particles that dissolve in water to break oil down into small droplets. By covering and binding them with thin and firm film, it becomes easier to skim and remove oil from water. In this way, biomicrogels increase the efficiency of oil recovery and amplify the environmental profile of solutions in oil spill response, as well as industrial wastewater treatment and cleaning products.
BMG Intepco is a Russian company developing biomicrogel-based oil encapsulators. The company’s proprietary liquid sorbent biomicrogel, BMG-P1, is an environmentally-friendly reagent comprising natural polysaccharides. BMG-P1 encapsulates oils and petroleum products and allows them to be easily separated from the water.
What About The Other 167 Solutions?
While we believe data is key to creating insights it can be easy to be overwhelmed by it. Our ambition is to create a comprehensive overview and provide actionable innovation intelligence and enable you to achieve your goals faster. The 5 oil spill cleanup solutions showcased above are promising examples out of 172 we analyzed for this article. To identify the most relevant solutions based on your specific criteria, get in touch.