News & Events

Four Winners Announced at $100,000 Shale Gas Innovation Contest Finals Event

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                    May 19, 2014

PITTSBURGH, PA –On May 15th in Southpointe, PA, during the 3rd Annual Shale Gas Innovation Contest the following four companies each walked away with a winner’s check for $25,000:

  • KCF Technologies, Inc. – SmartDiagnostics® wireless system that enables low cost predictive maintenance for rotating O&G Equipment
  • NG Innovations, Inc. – “C-FIT” unit identifies the density and amount  of fluid being transported and identifies the loading/unloading points, tracking and date/time stamping truck movement via satellite
  • OPTIMUM Pumping Technology – High-performance manifolds for reciprocating NG compressors that eliminates pulsation control bottles and their vibration-related failures, and significantly improving compressor reliability and operating efficiency
  • TM Industrial Supply- Filtration technology to effectively separate for removal the NGL’s and other contaminates from natural gas through the use of their Gas Flow Membrane Technology

Bill Hall, SGICC Director commented, “We were very pleased with the quality of this year’s applications.  Reducing from over 80 entries to the 13 finalists was an arduous task. The judges did a fantastic job analyzing all of the applications. The four winners are all impressive examples of innovation on display. These companies identified a challenge the shale energy industry faces and developed impressive solutions ready to be implemented.”

Glen Chatfield, President of Optimum Pumping Technology noted, “We’ve been on a long journey to bring our product to market, and this award is so exciting for us! The competition is so stiff, and to be named a winner in this contest lets the industry know that we have developed a product that they need to investigate. The interactions we’ve had with the Shale Gas Innovation Center have been great, and as a Ben Franklin funded company through Innovation Works here in Pittsburgh, I can personally attest to the value of the Ben Franklin organization to entrepreneurs across the state of Pennsylvania.”

Joe Frantz, Vice President of Engineering for Range Resources-Appalachia was one of the judges at this year finals event. He noted, “I’ve worked with SGICC since its inception, and I really enjoyed the engagement in the Innovation Contest this year. Their process used to uncover innovations is a real value for the industry.”

Dante Bonaquist, Senior Corporate Fellow, R&D at Praxair, a sponsor company and judge noted, “Through the Shale Gas Innovation Contest, SGICC brings together a broad range of promising ideas covering production, transportation and utilization.  From the technology scouting perspective, there is no better opportunity to see high caliber shale gas related innovations on display at a single event.”

To view a list of all 13 Finalists with technology descriptions and the full press release with quotes from all four winners go to:

The sponsors for this year’s contest were: Ben Franklin Technology Partners (, ANGA (, Aquatech (, Baker Hughes (, Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation (, CONSOL Energy (, Chesapeake Energy (, Chevron (, EQT (, First National Bank ( ), GE Oil & Gas (, Little Pine Resources (, the Marcellus Shale Coalition (, PPG Industries ( , Praxair (, Range Resources (, Seneca Resources (, and Williams (

For further information:

Bill Hall/ Director
Shale Gas Innovation & Commercialization Center