Fuel Fix

(ellensamuelsson/Flickr)

Networking tip: Icebreakers

It’s tough to start a conversation with someone you don’t know. The weather isn’t a great starting point. Neither is the food.  More »
(Jennifer A. Dlouhy/Houston Chronicle)

King coal losing crown as U.S. gains energy independence

After working 37 years in the coal mines of West Virginia, Ronny Justice punctuates his sentences with coughs. He lost his job a year ago, leaving him without health insurance just as he’s battling the early stages of black-lung disease.  More »
A rig in Colorado drills a well for natural gas that will be released using hydraulic fracturing. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)

Anti-fracking amendment on ballot in NE Ohio city

Voters are weighing a proposal to ban hydraulic fracturing in a northeast Ohio city where disposal of wastewater from the drilling method led to earthquakes and alleged groundwater contamination.  More »
Solar panels are installed in Arlington, Ariz.  (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)

First Solar seeks 5.5 gigawatts of sales to fill pipeline

First Solar Inc. (FSLR), the largest U.S. solar manufacturer by shipments, said it’s pursuing as much as 5.5 gigawatts of prospective sales, mainly in the Americas, after its pipeline of orders was unchanged in the first quarter.  More »
In this undated file photo, flags fly over a sign at Murphy Oil Corp., headquarters in El Dorado, Ark. (AP Photo/The El Dorado News-Times, Michael Orrell, File)

Murphy Oil Corp.’s president, CEO to step down

Longtime Murphy Oil Corp. executive Steve Cosse plans to step down and will be replaced by Roger Jenkins, executive vice president and chief operating officer, the company announced Monday.  More »
A massive fire from a PG&E pipeline explosion roars through a mostly residential neighborhood in San Bruno, Calif. in Sept. 2010. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma, File)

Calif agency says PG&E should pay $2.25B for blast

California regulators recommended Monday that Pacific Gas & Electric Co. pay a record $2.25 billion fine for decades of negligence that led to a deadly gas pipeline explosion that leveled a San Francisco Bay Area neighborhood.  More »
Pierre Gauthier is President and CEO, Alstom U.S. and Canada.

Guest Commentary: Where certainty leads, innovation follows

Pierre Gauthier, president and CEO of Alstom U.S. and Canada, calls on policymakers to establish clear targets for future investment in research and development, to foster technology development in the private sector.  More »
Employees at National Oilwell Varco work on a lower blowout preventer stack (left) and lower marine riser package, (right) in Houston. (Melissa Phillip / Houston Chronicle)

National Oilwell Varco sees big business in blowout preventers

Bulky, heavy and designed for redundancy rather than beauty, blowout preventers are the last line of defense for a runaway well. National Oilwell Varco has staked a piece of the company’s future on expanding production of blowout preventers and exporting them around the world.  More »
Olympian Jackie Joyner Kersee speaks to more than 800 in attendance.

Olympian Jackie Joyner Kersee inspires crowd at OTC reception

More than 800 OTC attendees and guests turned out for the UK-BP Energy Excellence reception at the Hilton Post Oak on Monday night, featuring Olympian Jackie Joyner Kersee.  More »
Andrew Cox, Maritime Sales Manager, FLIR Systems, Inc. demonstrates a a FLIR camera at OTC 2013 at Reliant Park Monday, May 6, 2013, in Houston. ( James Nielsen / Houston Chronicle)

Sit in Jelec’s chair, dive into virtual drilling

Houston-based Jelec staged a leather control chair, known as the Drilling Cyber Chair, in its booth as the centerpiece of a self-directed, land drilling simulation.  More »
Andrew Cox, Maritime Sales Manager, FLIR Systems, Inc. demonstrates a a FLIR camera at OTC 2013 at Reliant Park Monday, May 6, 2013, in Houston. ( James Nielsen / Houston Chronicle )

Thermal vision beats night vision

Thermal imaging displays tiny differences in heat and technology has allowed it to become miniaturized, and commercialization has caused its price to drop.  More »
Texas Governor Rick Perry speaks during the Offshore Energy Development: Improving Federal and State Cooperation session at OTC 2013 at Reliant Park Monday, May 6, 2013, in Houston. ( James Nielsen / Houston Chronicle )

Rick Perry to Obama: Give coastal states more access & dollars

Texas Gov. Rick Perry and five fellow Republicans from other coastal states on Monday implored the Obama administration to open new areas for offshore drilling, saying the change would give a jolt to the U.S. economy by spurring jobs and spending.  More »