Nikolai Patrick Sander

23 November 2014 | 0 comments | Births & Birthdays | by

Nikolai Patrick Sanders

Adrian and Karen Sanders want to share the news of the birth of their grandson, Nikolai Patrick Sanders. He was born on September 29, 2014 in Daegu, South Korea to Ivan and Schylene Sanders. Nikolai and his sister Edin were both born in Daegu, South Korea where the family will be living until April 2015.

HZ1AB 1966 Saudi Arabia

21 November 2014 | 0 comments | Special Interest | by

HZ1AB 1966 Saudi Arabia

The operators were Victor L. “Vic” Crawford (W1TYQ, HZ3TYQ), Shelby L. “Jim” Barksdale (K3PUS) and Clifford “Cliff” Swann, Jr. (W8GCN, 7Z3AA, later W5SMI). Vic and Cliff were employees of ARAMCO and lived at the ARAMCO compound about 5 miles from the airport. Jim was a contractor and lived at the air base. W5KNE

HZ1AB 1966 Saudi Arabia

One of the operators from this club station was Vic Crawford W1TYQ:

I’m sorry to report that Vic Crawford – W1TYQ passed away on November 8, 2014 at age 94 in Michigan. Vic’s friend for decades Ned – W1RAN provided me with some of the “high points” of Vic’s long ham radio career. Vic was well known as HZ3TYQ in Saudi Arabia (1963 – 1976) and made two DXpeditions each into the Saudi Arabia / Iraqi Neutral Zone HZ3TYQ/8Z4, HZ3TYQ/8Z4, and Kuwait / Saudi Arabia Neutral Zones, HZ3TYQ/8Z5, 9K2TL/NZ. The operation from the Kuwait / Saudi Arabia Neutral Zone as 9K3TL/NZ was with Jack Laub – HB9TL, Roy Fleming – MP4BBD, L.M. “Rundy” Rundlett – W3ZA / K4ZA / OD5CT, and G3OFI in 1961. Vic retired to Torch Lake, Michigan as W1TYQ/8 with particular interest in 80 meters, where he proceeded to rack up almost 300 countries.

A personal observation or two. Vic also operated a good deal from HZ1AB, back in the “Hot Ziggety One American Boy” heyday. Vic was known world-wide for his impeccable CW and top notch operating. I will always remember June 29, 1962, when as a 16 year old with a “rag tag” station in Upper Michigan, I worked Vic from HZ1AB. I know I’m not alone in sharing lifelong respect for Vic, both as a top notch operator, and a world class guy. We have lost one more from America’s Greatest Generation. You just can’t replace guys like Vic.
73, Don Karvonen – K8MFO

Vic was an aviator. He was a key man in the development of aviation at the Arabian American Oil Company. The California Standard men brought the first aircraft to Saudi for commercial use. There had been some military aviation in WW I (T.E. Lawrence, etc.). They also provided guidance to the Saudi government in establishing navigation and air to ground communications. HZ1HZ, Ahmad Zaidan, was to Post, Telephone and Telegraph supervisor in Eastern Saudi and worked on these efforts with Vic. I spoke with Vic on the telephone a few times but never had the pleasure of meeting him.

73 and SK

I remember visiting Vic in his house in Dhahran when I was a kid there, learning Morse code as part of my Boy Scout progress, along with Henry Folkerts / 7Z3AB and Don Homewood who wasn’t licensed in Arabia, he was the chief safety officer at Aramco. Vic’s shack in Dhahran was one of the corner closets in the house they had on the ‘hill’ in Dhahran. He was always gracious with his time and encouraged me to work on getting my ham ticket, which I did when I went away to boarding school in New Hampshire. Regards, Terry / K9TRE

HZ1AB 1966 Saudi Arabia

Vic standing by their modified Westinghouse amplifier, which they drove with a Collins KWS-1!! Now that’s a real amp! In the clip it is said the amp could “melt the snow off the Alps” …

This amp was a pull from the ARAMCO Marine HF comm system. We were told that that blower was very loud, so they cut a hole in the shack wall, put the control side in the shack and the back of the rack outside the room. Kept the shack cooler and quieter for sure.

They also had a BC-610 modified for linear amp service and driven by a 32S1 back in the day. The story on the BC-610 is great. Smitty, W8FZL, (a Battle Creek ham who told me the story) was career Air Force. In 1947-8 he was stationed at Dhahran. In those days they ran an Air Sea Rescue detachment with a modified B-17 and a Communications Detachment. Dhahran was the end point for bombers attacking Soviet Targets in the event WW-III broke loose. It was also an important layover point for aircraft heading to the Pacific from Europe. The shack was a Harvey-Wells TBS-50 160-6 meter TX and an SX-28 in an old shelter from the back of a 2 ½ ton truck. One of the houses at the ARAMCO camp had one of these for a garden shed. I always wondered if that was the HZ1AB shelter’s final resting place. It was between the telephone exchange, building 810, and the old mail center. The CO of the commo detachment was a ham and a LT Col. Smitty came over to the shack and the Col. had a QSO on but had a phone call “Talk to Kurt in Germany while I take this call Smitty” OK Boss. Smitty grabs the mic. When the Col. Gets back to the rig, Smitty is transmitting “ Hey, Kurt, I was up at Rhine Main Air Base a few weeks ago TDY, I saw a whole warehouse full of new BC-610’s. Man, it would be nice to have one of those here” Outside the shack the Col. is frantically making the “cut” sign across his throat. He grabs the mike. “OK Kurt, 73, we have to get back to work”. “Christ Smitty, that was Gen. LeMay. Are you trying to get us court martialed?” Two weeks later Smitty gets a call from the cargo ramp. “Smith, get your ass over here NOW!” He gets over to the ramp to find a huge wooden crate. One the red property tag is a message. “73 de Kurt”. The BC-610 had arrived at HZ1AB and would be in use up in to the 1960’s.

Lloyd and Iris Colvin showed me an HZ1AB QSL from 1946 when they were stationed in Japan. I did not get a copy of it, but that is the earliest evidence of an operation from the station I ever found.

73 de Bob WA8MOA HZ1AB 80-86.

Courtesy of

Original Saudi-Themed Gift that Supports International Charities

21 November 2014 | 1 comment | Special Interest | by

Looking for a unique, one of a kind gift that is guaranteed to bring back fond memories of time spent in Saudi Arabia? A gift that would help support a worthy charity?  All proceeds go directly to well researched groups. Perhaps for the holiday season, an up coming anniversary, marriage or graduation. Look no further!

Tricia FranckTricia Franck with Saudi Throw gift for charity

The Preceptor Alpha chapter of Beta Sigma Phi in Dhahran, now Sadeeqa, designed this cotton throw/blanket in 1998 specifically to generate funds for charity.  The final product was, and continues to be, masterfully woven in North Carolina. The richness of colors, depth of details and pictures chosen are exquisite.  Included are the Little Blue Mosque by the entrance gate in Dhahran, the clock tower on the campus of KFUPM, Wendy Cocker’s photo of camels crossing a highway overpass, a central design of dates, basket and palm trees, in addition to a Saudi coffee pot, dhow, falcon, carpet, Mada’in Saleh, and a kanjar (curved Arab dagger).

Since the first order was received sixteen years ago, sales have been impressive and generally demand outweighs supply. The increased revenue has allowed us to generously support a much wider variety of charities.  Through their purchase, not only do people get a wonderful memoir of their time in Saudi Arabia, but they are also helping others around the world.  Outreach has been extended to charities in the Middle East, Asia, Africa, and Central America and America.  Funds have been sent to help those affected by world disasters such as tsunamis, hurricanes, and wars. Supporting women and children has been a focus.  Some charities have meant something personally to our own members such as hospice care or research for cures of childhood illnesses.

A limited number of these throws are available for purchase and are ready to be mailed to any US address. The cost for the throw remains $80.00 with an additional $10.00 for postage within the US. They are 100% cotton, machine washable, and measure 51” x 70”. All profits are given to charity.

Please contact Tricia Franck if you have any questions or would like to purchase one.

We are indebted to Aramco Expats for donating their time and effort to market our throw on their site.  Through this generous act, we will be able to widen the circle of charities to which we donate and even more people will benefit.

Tricia Franck

Firmly Embracing the Future at ADIPEC 2014

20 November 2014 | 0 comments | Saudi Aramco News | by

Saudi Aramco News

Technology and talent are the key to transforming industry challenges into opportunities was the key message from Amin H. Nasser, Saudi Aramco senior vice president of Upstream, at the opening ADIPEC 2014, the third largest energy conference in the world.

Held under the patronage of HH Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, president of the United Arab Emirates, Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference (ADIPEC) 2014 marked its 30th anniversary.

“The best way to protect oneself from, or prepare for, the future is to create it,” said Nasser during the session, which mirrored the conference’s theme of “Challenges and Opportunities for the Next 30 Years.”

Nasser went on to look at how innovation and leadership challenges can be recast as opportunities and what the future can look like as a result of this.

“Thanks to technology, we’re on the brink of a golden age,” he said, adding that global supply was rising with unconventional oil and gas coming onstream and estimates of recovery levels rising. Resources that only a few years ago were inaccessible or unrecoverable are now being unlocked, he noted.

However, this expansion came at a price, and cost escalation was a major concern, Nasser stressed. Describing a triangle in which the easily accessible resources are at the top, he said the industry is now moving toward the base of the triangle where the amount of resources is greater but requires much more sophisticated technology to extract and produce.

“It is crucial that we all work together to reduce costs,” Nasser said, adding that advancing technology will become a driver for further developments. “We must invest in technology as an enabler of innovation.”

The long view

Nasser observed that although the pace of technology advancement is often dizzying, to truly invest wisely and achieve the best results, leaders industrywide must focus on the long view and commit to investing in technologies that will not only help the industry to survive in the future, but which will also enable it to thrive. He noted that being in an industry that can be volatile at times makes it important to stay the course.

“The market is going to grow,” said Nasser. “We must be ready with the right people, the right training, the right technologies and the right capital program.”

Unconventionals: The case for success

Operational Excellence will be the key driver for success when it comes to developing unconventional fuels, and those who are able to control costs most efficiently will succeed, said Ibraheem M. Assa’adan, executive director of Exploration at Saudi Aramco, at a session titled “Unconventional Resources, Challenges and Opportunities: Focus on the Middle East.”

Assa’adan noted that the Kingdom has significant unconventional opportunities in various locations around Saudi Arabia, from the Rub’ al-Khali in the south to the Eastern Province to the Kingdom’s north, and that exploiting these tight gas and shale gas deposits is crucial to help meet ever increasing power and water demands domestically. As Saudi Aramco begins to ramp up its well-planned unconventional development, it is working to develop these resources as economically as possible.

Research, technology and communication

One of the key drivers to successful R&D efforts industrywide is a commitment to research and strategic global collaboration, said Abdulaziz O. AlKaabi, chief technologist of Reservoir Engineering Technology at Saudi Aramco’s EXPEC Advanced Research Center.

AlKaabi, who was part of a five-person panel discussing “Research and Technology Development,” said that considering its unique position, Saudi Aramco views R&D as a long-term investment. As such, technology is an integral part of the company’s strategy to meet the long-term challenges.

He also stressed the need to understand and decipher challenges at a very fundamental level; bottom-up. “In my opinion, success in reservoir R&D will depend on how well we are able to describe and manipulate the reservoir system at the micro, nano and even molecular and atomic scales,” said AlKaabi, adding that understanding fundamentals is essential. “In fact, new fundamentals and approaches that are in the essence of hydrocarbon extraction will need to be defined.”

A strong presence

In addition to the three high profile speakers, Saudi Aramco — as it has at previous ADIPEC sessions — had a strong presence in the event, from the executive plenary, panel and technical sessions, to its exhibition.

The company’s participation in the event included more than 25 papers by Saudi Aramco Upstream professionals who were accepted for presentation through the various technical sessions.

Also, the company’s “Women Development Program” was recognized as a finalist for the “Empowerment of Women in the Oil and Gas Industry” category during the opening night’s ADIPEC Awards session.

Khurais Program Powers Forward

19 November 2014 | 0 comments | Saudi Aramco News | by

Saudi Aramco News

Saudi Aramco has released the tenders for seven engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contracts for the Khurais Program.

The Khurais Arabian Light Crude Increment is an onshore oil field development, which saw the field initially discovered in 1957. By 2009, KhCPF had a processing capacity of 1.2 million barrels per day (bpd) of Arabian Light crude oil, 320 million standard cubic feet per day (scfd) of associated gas and 80,000 bpd of natural gas liquids (NGLs).

With an eye toward the future, a new project was initiated to increase the crude production of the facility to 1.5 million bpd, making KhCPF one of the largest oil producing facilities in the world. Planning for the new Khurais increment project began in 2012 and the Front End Engineering Design (FEED) was completed in May 2014.
The current Khurais Program involves the development of the Lower Fadhli field and production to KhCPF, and includes the construction of new processing facilities to handle an additional capacity of 300,000 bpd of Arabian Light crude oil, 143,000,000 scfd of associated gas and 34,000 bpd of NGL. To accommodate this increase, a new gas-oil separation plant (GOSP), a crude stabilization unit and a gas train will be installed at the KhCPF.

Two gas turbine driven pump trains will also be installed to provide treated seawater injection for reservoir pressure support.

To optimize energy efficiency and make the plant partially self-reliant with power, a 165 megawatt co-generation unit will also be installed. About 45 percent of the power generated will come from recovering waste heat from the gas turbine hot exhaust flue gases that otherwise would have been vented into the atmosphere.

To comply with Saudi government directives to conserve groundwater, one of the largest membrane technology-based facilities within Saudi Aramco will be installed to use seawater to produce water for process use and refined seawater for injection and enhanced oil recovery production testing.

The Khurais Program will also see the installation of a grass-roots satellite GOSP to debottleneck and restore 200,000 bpd of production capacity from the Abu Jifan and Mazalij fields. To support the Khurais Program, 650 kilometers of pipeline will be installed to transport crude oil, gas, NGL and seawater.

The tender for the construction activities of the plant was awarded to Italian company Saipem last month. Currently, the project has broken ground and site preparation for the construction areas is underway. Project completion is slated for 2017.