Nine research projects aimed at increasing U.S. supplies of natural gas and other petroleum resources have been selected for funding by the Research Partnership to Secure Energy for America (RPSEA). The projects, which were selected under the 2008 Unconventional Resources Program, reportedly will help meet U.S. energy demand, while also lowering consumer costs.

RPSEA states that the Unconventional Resources Program is designed to bring the resources of America’s leading universities, research institutions and technology innovations to bear on the development of gas shales, tight-gas sands and coal-bed methane resources. The main drivers in this development include reducing costs, increasing efficiency, improving safety and minimizing environmental impacts.

While awards under the RPSEA Unconventional Resources Pro-gram are open to any U.S.-based organization, most projects involve a team consisting of researchers along with producers or service companies that are in a position to evaluate and apply new technologies. Each proposal must provide a minimum of 20-percent cost share, with up to 50 percent for field-demonstration projects.

Some of the selected projects include Barnett and Appalachian Shale Water Management and Reuse Technologies, Novel Gas Isotope Interpretation Tools to Optimize Gas Shale Production, The Environmentally Friendly Drilling Systems Program, Pretreatment and Water Management for Frac Water Reuse and Salt Production, and Sustaining Fracture Area and Conductivity of Gas Shale Reservoirs for Enhancing Long-Term Production and Recovery.