Editor’s note: On April 10, News at Work introduced the first in a series of digital posters featuring Fermilab inventors. We continue the series with occasional posts, each featuring a different inventor at the laboratory.
During the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010, Fermilab scientist Arden Warner began experimenting with oil in water seeded with magnetite. He found that magnetite forms a preferential bond with the oil and can be manipulated with magnetic fields. Warner shared his idea with the Office of Partnerships and Technology Transfer in 2011, and the first electromagnetic boom patent was issued in 2014. The technology is in the process of being commercialized.
Aaron Sauers is Fermilab’s patent and licensing executive.