Curtin University of Technology has welcomed significant investment from four organisations for gas technology company Cool Energy Pty Ltd.
Pro Vice-Chancellor Research and Development Professor Barney Glover said the investment in the company - established to commercialise Curtin research - would lead to further development of technology which could have a global impact on the gas industry.
Nido Petroleum Ltd and Australian Development Capital Ltd confirmed their investment commitments to acquire significant shareholdings in Cool Energy over the coming months
Further investments will come from ARC Energy Ltd and the Centre for Energy and Greenhouse Technologies (CEGT).
"Cool Energy is the result of innovative research conducted by the Joint Woodside-Curtin Hydrocarbon Research Facility, led by Professor Robert Amin," Professor Glover said.
"This week's announcements are recognition of the strategic importance of this research to the gas industry, both from an economic and environmental perspective.
"Importantly, the involvement of these four new investors gives Cool Energy access to a broad range of synergistic skills and resources. CEGT's involvement is also testament to the environmental benefits which will flow from the use of this technology."
The cryogenic gas processing technology removes carbon dioxide in liquid form from gas feedstocks, potentially solving significant environmental problems facing the gas industry and allowing the commercialisation of previously uneconomic gas fields throughout the world.
Professor Glover said a $1.9 million Commonwealth Government Start Grant and $3 million in private investment would fund the next stage of development, which would include the design and fabrication of a 2MMscfd pilot plant of the process.
The plant would be field tested at an ARC Energy Perth Basin gas field and results would be available by the end of the year.
"Already, laboratory tests have shown the technology provides a range of benefits including as the ability to economically handle gas with very high concentrations of carbon dioxide, lower operating costs and the unlocking of gas reserves currently out of reach of the industry," Professor Glover said.
"This is an outstanding example of how first class research can be adapted to create real solutions for global industries."