Foresight and Canada’s Oil Sands Innovation Alliance Launch Prize Competition Seeking to Reduce Seismic Exploration Impact

Vancouver, CANADA – January 18, 2021 — Today, Foresight Cleantech Accelerator Centre (Foresight) has officially launched an open innovation competition across Canada and around the world, on behalf of Canada’s Oil Sands Innovation Alliance (COSIA). The competition seeks seismic exploration technologies that reduce the environmental impacts of oil sands exploration.

Seismic exploration evaluates underground oil sands resources using energy waves that can be used to interpret the subsurface geology. Current solutions require clearing corridors in the forest to put equipment in place to make the energy waves.

The competition, funded by Alberta Innovates, is looking for ways to reduce boreal forest disturbance from seismic oil sands exploration while maintaining seismic data quality to ensure safe and effective development of oil sands resources.

The competition features the ongoing COSIA Land Challenge—Reducing Seismic Exploration’s Footprint. Foresight and COSIA members are actively recruiting solutions that are applicable for two-, three- and four-dimensional subsurface geologic profiling and that will strive to reduce or eliminate tree removal.

Potential solutions could include:

●    Shrinking the size of equipment and practices to reduce land disturbance.
●    Moving seismic survey equipment to the air.
●    Installing seismic equipment at existing exploration well sites.
●    Applying alternative sampling theories to reduce the amount of sampling.

“COSIA is committed to accelerating environmental performance improvement in the oil sands and our members continue to seek out technologies that can make a difference,” said Jack O’Neill, Land Director at COSIA. “Launching this competition is the latest component of a multi-year program that includes research, testing and collaboration. We encourage innovators from around the world to put forward their ideas and technologies and be part of the clean tech innovation story in Canada's oil sands.”

"Foresight is delighted to be working with industry associations like COSIA to source solutions that improve environmental performance,” said Jacob Malthouse, Foresight's Vice President, Commercialization. "We hope to discover bold and scalable solutions that change the seismic exploration landscape.”
A 90-minute webinar introducing the competition is scheduled for February 2 at 10 a.m. MT.
Registration is here.

Intakes for the competition will be open from February 2 to April 1, 2021. Finalists will have the opportunity to pitch their solutions to COSIA members. A total of $15,000 cash will be awarded to the winners. Further details on the prize will be covered in the webinar on February 2. Additional information about criteria, eligibility and requirements are available here.


About Foresight Cleantech Accelerator Centre
Foresight is Western Canada’s Cleantech Innovation Centre which supports the identification and validation of cleantech opportunities and the successful commercialization of solutions. The organization brings together industry, government, academia and technologists to innovate and enable a responsible, more sustainable tomorrow. Find out more at and follow @ForesightCAC on Twitter & LinkedIn.

Canada’s Oil Sands Innovation Alliance (COSIA) is an alliance of oil sands companies working with scientists, academics and innovators in Canada and around the world to make Canadian energy part of a sustainable environment. COSIA’s goal is to help Canada become a global leader in clean technologies for oil production. Follow COSIA on social media and check out to learn more about the organization’s work on innovation in the oil sands.

About Alberta Innovates
Alberta Innovates is Alberta’s largest research and innovation agency. From funding to commercialization, the organization is Alberta’s innovation engine. Alberta Innovates is working to solve today’s challenges, creating new opportunities and forging a healthy, sustainable and prosperous future for Albertans today and for generations to come. Alberta Innovates is where innovation happens, and the organization touches every corner of the province for the benefit of all Albertans.

For more information, please contact:

Astrid Nunez