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Supporting innovation-focused Alberta business

A Calgary start up is revolutionizing pipeline safety and expects to double its workforce over the next three years with support from the Alberta Small Business Innovation and Research Initiative (ASBIRI) at Alberta Innovates.

Alberta Small Business Initiative

Minister Deron Bilous and Steven Koles, President and CEO of HiFi Engineering

The ASBIRI program supports local small businesses in the early stages of commercializing new technology, by supporting major real-world technology demonstrations.

Hifi Engineering, a Calgary start up, plans to grow their business by building and manufacturing new leak detection technology in Alberta and exporting their product to monitor thousands of kilometers of pipeline worldwide.

Through the ASBIRI program, they are beginning that expansion at TransCanada Corp., Enbridge Inc. and GE Canada, and anticipate a significant increase in future work on new and retrofitted pipelines.

“We’re proud to help homegrown HiFi Engineering bring their new leak-detection technology to some of the biggest players in the oil-and-gas industry. Together, we are growing our economy, creating new jobs and ensuring Alberta continues to be the energy and environmental leader the world needs for the 21st century.” 

Deron Bilous, Minister of Economic Development and Trade

Hifi’s patented High Fidelity Dynamic Sensing (HDS™) technology will be used to detect various events and leaks with dramatically higher sensitivity than existing leak detection systems can provide – saving oil-and-gas companies money and protecting the environment.

Testing locations include both ends of the Keystone pipeline, which will run from Hardisty, Alberta to Houston, Texas, as well as Enbridge’s new Norlite pipeline, which went into service this year.

“We are very pleased to be part of the ASBIRI program and collaborating with Enbridge and TransCanada. Hifi is ready to showcase our HDS technology performance on these projects to prove our technology is indeed world class, outperforms other alternatives, and is ready to assist the industry in path to improved safety.”

Steven Koles, President and Chief Executive Officer of HiFi Engineering

Alberta Innovates invested $2.4 million into the project. The investment from industry partners totals $7.3 million, with a specific requirement for industry to contribute approximately 25 per cent from the design stage onward.

“We are looking forward to seeing Hifi’s technology perform on our Norlite pipeline. We understand this will be one of the longest installations of Hifi technology to-date, and we are looking forward to a successful collaboration with Hifi as they optimize and refine their system for real-world monitoring of pipelines. We are hopeful this technology can provide Enbridge with enhanced leak detection capability and complement performance of our current systems and multi-layered approach to pipeline safety.”

Barry Callele, Director of Pipeline Control Systems and Leak Detection at Enbridge

“This is another important step in our ongoing partnership with Enbridge and the Government of Alberta to rigorously test new technology and implement it on our pipelines when it can add another layer to our comprehensive pipeline safety and leak detection program. We look forward to seeing how Hifi’s unique sensing technology performs in real time as we continue to evaluate how it can be deployed most effectively on our pipeline systems in the future.”  

Erik Tatarchuk, Vice President of Liquid Pipeline Operations, Transcanada

ASBIRI is administered by Alberta Innovates, a provincially funded corporation. Alberta Innovates’ mandate is to deliver solutions by building on our province’s research and technology development strengths in the core sectors of health, environment, energy, food and fibre, and platforms such as artificial intelligence and nanotechnology.


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