STEM Professional of the week

Manuel E. Gonzalez      

Mr. Gonzalez is the proud recipient of the 2012 HENAAC Lifetime Achievement Award.

Manuel E. Gonzalez is known inside Chevron for his relentless ingenuity and commitment to his objectives, a commitment spanning 37 years. He currently holds 23 U.S. and international patents and has published 16 professional papers.


Mr. Gonzalez has brought his extensive experience working with the U.S. Congress, U.S. Department of Energy, and scientists from Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) to bear in his role leading The Los Alamos Alliance (The Alliance). In this capacity he is responsible for guiding the partnership between Chevron and LANL to develop advanced energy solutions. He has the rare ability to translate basic research into practical applications across a wide variety of disciplines and technical areas including physics, chemistry, materials science and advanced simulation technology. He is an expert in deep water casing design, drilling, and completions. Mastery of these skills has led to nearly 20 new collaborative projects, at least five game-changing technologies in oil and gas resource discovery and production, and a track record at The Alliance for cutting in half the time it takes most industry initiatives to move from innovative ideas to the marketplace.

He also applied his vast skill range and experience to INFICOMM, a low power means for wireless communications. Mr. Gonzalez saw its potential to increase the amount of data transmitted and analyzed from a wide array of sensors in the wellbore by a million-fold. His leadership has established a powerful business case that’s led to a start-up company to commercialize and deploy the technology.

His achievements at INFICOMM demonstrate his exceptional ability to apply revolutionary technologies to solve practical real world problems. He developed novel approaches to tackle trapped annular pressure – the pressure generated by trapped, super-cold wellbore fluids as they heat up and expand, a problem that has plagued the industry for years. He led the effort to apply advanced acoustic imaging techniques to understand the entire volume around a well and design improvements to separation problems in refining.

Mr. Gonzalez is leading a new partnership with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory where the initial focus will be on advanced well performance solutions, specifically enhancing the Remote Operated Vehicle capabilities and advanced robotic technology.

Mr. Gonzalez has spent his entire career taking on challenges and applying the lessons learned to new horizons. He started this journey at West Point and the U.S. Army, where he commanded a combat missile tank unit and helped develop a new radar system configuration and data communications system. In 1981, he entered the oil industry with Exxon as a Senior Engineering Advisor where he was responsible for completing three of the deepest producing wells in the world at the time at five miles deep. Between 1992 and 1998, Mr. Gonzalez served as President of MANCO Oil & Gas Technologies, and he co-founded Isotag, Inc. In 1994, Isotag received an award from the Jürgen Schneider Foundation in Germany for the highest innovation and technological achievement – the first time the award was granted to a U.S. company.

Mr. Gonzalez has been instrumental in facilitating Chevron’s involvement with LANL to grow a Math and Science Academy (MSA) that provides training for K-12 teachers who work in the traditionally Hispanic and Native American communities of rural northern New Mexico. He also works with the Chevron Fellows’ Mentoring program and has served as an ambassador for his organization with many professional societies. He received the Chevron Chairman’s Award for outstanding contributions to Chevron, and the Excellence in Technology Transfer Award by the Federal Laboratory Consortium for his contributions to INFICOMM.

Manny hails from Matanzas, Cuba, and his family was exiled to the United States in 1961. They settled in Miami, Florida, where he graduated with an Associates degree from Miami Dade College before entering the U.S. Military Academy at West Point where he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and commissioned as an officer in 1975.

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