July – Federal Lab to Conduct Well Testing in Lea County, NM

NHF is further leveraging its agreements with the federal laboratories – bringing their expertise to Lea County. The Foundation has secured agreements with government laboratories – working to utilize DEFENSE technologies in the oil and gas field.


Key engineers from the U.S. Army’s New York-based BENET LABORATORIES (Benet) will be in Lea County, NM this summer to conduct field tests on sucker rods in oil wells.

A research, development, and engineering facility, Benét is responsible for the full lifecycle of mortars, tank guns, and artillery cannon for howitzers; it provides tank turret support for ABRAMS and Crew Cooling for ABRAMS, Bradley and LAV combat vehicles; and Benet provides support to the Army’s industrial base at the Watervliet Arsenal.

So – how does their work relate to the oil and gas field…?

Answering that question is the task of New Horizons Foundation (NHF). The NHF agreement with the federal labs serves all parties: 1) the federal labs are looking for opportunities to use their developed technologies in the commercial market, and 2) NHF is working to find solutions to industry problems that allow companies to be competitive in the marketplace, thus grow and prosper in the region.

The technology being tested in Lea County is a specialty coating that has been used on Black Hawk Helicopters. The coating has had a positive result on the extension of army equipment in the field – life extension of equipment is a major cost savings. This is also then potentially helpful to the oil and gas industry. If the federal lab-developed coating ‘works’ on sucker rods that are used in the wells, life extension and cost reduction can be realized in this industry sector, too.

Initial lab testing suggests that an improvement of up to 16 times current levels could be achieved. With that level of improvement and product life extension, cost savings could be significant to the oil and gas industry. A coating that extends the life of sucker rods would mean less downtime at the well site spent on replacement, and less replacement means cost savings.

“This type of ‘find’ at the federal labs is what NHF is working for; if industry can tell us what they need…where they have problems…we will work to identify proven technologies to solve that problem,” stated Dale Gannaway, executive director of NHF.

Gannaway indicates that additionally, these types of solutions can give a company a competitive edge, helping them grow their company; “which of course would be a great economic boost for the region.”

Benet Labs is a part of the Weapons & Software Engineering (WSEC), Armament Research, Development, and Engineering Center (ARDEC). Benét is located at the historic Watervliet Arsenal in upstate New York.

Individuals or companies interested in learning more about NHF and accessing FEDERAL TECHNOLOGIES to their company needs and projects should contact: Dale Gannaway, Executive Director – New Horizons Foundation; dgannaway@nmjc.edu.

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