Heartland Group and Barron Petroleum form joint venture
The Heartland Group Ventures (Heartland), a Fort Worth based oil and gas investment company, has entered into a material definitive agreement with its joint venture partner, Barron Petroleum (Barron) for a joint drilling venture in the newly discovered natural gas fields in Val Verde County, in Texas.
In a statement, the companies say that pursuant to the agreement, they have completed the all-cash purchase of two additional and contiguous natural gas leases and options in an undisclosed area of the county, including shallow and deep drilling rights. These will be added to their existing assets in the region, the statement adds.
“The first lease was assigned to Heartland and Barron in September 2020, and the second lease was assigned in October 2020, bringing their total acreage in the area to 24,200 acres. These acquisitions were completed following the venture's recent discovery of a new field containing in excess of 417 billion cubic feet of natural gas,” the statement continues.
As per the terms of the venture, Heartland and Barron will utilise their jointly held drilling assets and will equally share the costs associated with the drilling and completion of deep and shallow vertical wells. Furthermore, they jointly own the propriety 3D seismic data on the leased properties, the statement confirms.
Drilling and completion is anticipated to begin in the November-December 2020 timeframe, and planning for the project is already underway, the companies say.
"We are excited to continue to grow our natural gas asset base in the region and further build our joint venture relationship with Barron Petroleum," says Rustin Brunson, Heartland's Fund Manager.
"Our recent discovery with Barron has given us the opportunity to build our natural gas asset portfolio in a substantial and cost-effective manner.
"Like others in the industry, we are closely watching markets and tailoring our long and short-term strategies accordingly. We believe these acquisitions will go a long way toward building an energy asset portfolio with long-term viability and cost-effective operations,” he adds.
In August, Barron announced a major new discovery in the Permian Basin in Val Verde Country. In a statement released at the time, the company says that the 13,000-acre field is estimated to hold 417 billion cubic feet – or 74.2 million barrels in oil and gas reserves.
Barron presently holds development rights to over 13,000 acres over the prospect, which was developed with the use of a 3D seismic survey. The company has identified 67 high-graded Strawn formation locations and is refining future location placement based on results of the first well.
Barron Petroleum is also contemplating testing and potential development in the Canyon formation at an approximate depth of 9,000 feet and Ellenburger at about 16,000 feet depth, the statement adds.
Form Energy receives funding power for iron-air batteries
Form Energy believes it has cracked the conundrum of commercialising grid storage through iron-air batteries - and some of the biggest names in industry are backing its potential.
The startup recently announced the battery chemistry of its first commercial product and a $200 million Series D financing round led by ArcelorMittal’s XCarb innovation fund. Founded in 2017, Form Energy is backed by investors Eni Next LLC, MIT’s The Engine, Breakthrough Energy Ventures, Prelude Ventures, Capricorn Investment Group and Macquarie Capital.
While solar and wind resources are the lowest marginal cost sources of electricity, the grid faces a challenge: how to manage the multi-day variability of renewable energy, even in periods of multi-day weather events, without sacrificing energy reliability or affordability.
Moreover, while Lithium-ion batteries are well suited to fast bursts of energy production, they run out of energy after just a few hours. Iron-air batteries, however, are predicted to have theoretical energy densities of more than 1,200 Wh/kg according to Renaissance of the iron-air battery (phys.org)
The active components of Form Energy's iron-air battery system are some of the cheapest, and most abundant materials: iron, water, and air. Iron-air batteries are the best solution to balance the multi-day variability of renewable energy due to their extremely low cost, safety, durability, and global scalability.
It claims its first commercial product is a rechargeable iron-air battery capable of delivering electricity for 100 hours at system costs competitive with conventional power plants and at less than 1/10th the cost of lithium-ion and can be optimised to store electricity for 100 hours at system costs competitive with legacy power plants.
"This product is our first step to tackling the biggest barrier to deep decarbonisation: making renewable energy available when and where it’s needed, even during multiple days of extreme weather, grid outages, or periods of low renewable generation," it states.
Mateo Jaramillo, CEO and Co-founder of Form Energy, said it conducted a broad review of available technologies and has reinvented the iron-air battery to optimise it for multi-day energy storage for the electric grid. "With this technology, we are tackling the biggest barrier to deep decarbonization: making renewable energy available when and where it’s needed, even during multiple days of extreme weather or grid outages," he said.
Form Energy and ArcelorMittal are working jointly on the development of iron materials which ArcelorMittal would non-exclusively supply for Form’s battery systems. Form Energy intends to source the iron domestically and manufacture the battery systems near where they will be sited. Form Energy’s first project is with Minnesota-based utility Great River Energy, located near the heart of the American Iron Range.
Greg Ludkovsky, Global Head of Research and Development at ArcelorMittal, believes Form Energy is at the leading edge of developments in the long-duration, grid-scale battery storage space. "The multi-day energy storage technology they have developed holds exciting potential to overcome the issue of intermittent supply of renewable energy."
Investors in Form Energy's November 2020 round included Energy Impact Partners, NGP Energy Technology Partners III, and Temasek.
In May 2020, it signed a contract with Minnesota-based utility Great River Energy to jointly deploy a 1MW / 150MWh pilot project to be located in Cambridge, MN. Great River Energy is Minnesota's second-largest electric utility and the fifth largest generation and transmission cooperative in the US.
Last week Helena and Energy Vault announced a strategic partnership to identify additional opportunities for Energy Vault’s waste remediation technologies as the company begins deployment of its energy storage system worldwide. It received new investment from Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures (SAEV) in June.
Maoneng has revealed more details of its proposed 240MWp / 480MWh Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) on Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula in Australia (click here).
The BESS represents hundreds of millions of dollars of investment that will improve electricity grid reliability and network stability by drawing energy from the grid during off-peak periods for battery storage, and dispatching energy to the grid during peak periods.