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Category Archive: Pipeline

Forum Focuses on Future Energy

4 February 2011 | comments (0) | Saudi Aramco News | by

DHAHRAN, February 02, 2011 – A summit of industry and academia gathered here recently at King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM) to build collaboration in two vital subjects, research and development and preparing an expert workforce.

Under the auspices of Ali I. Al-Naimi, Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, the Second Saudi Meeting on Oil and Natural Gas Exploration and Production Technologies (OGEP 2010), held Dec. 18-20, drew more than 800 engineers, scientists, technologists, managers, academics, business leaders and government officials from the Kingdom and the world.

OGEP Engineers, scientists, technologists, managers, academics, business, leaders and government officials from throughout the Kingdom and around the world viewed numerous displays such as this, as well as technical sessions, panel discussions and more. (Photos: Hasan M. Al-Taraiki)

The KFUPM venue emphasized the role of academia in the future of the industry, said Yahya Shinawi, director general of the ministry’s Eastern Province branch and chairman of the OGEP 2010 Supervisory Committee. The theme was “Academia and Petroleum Industry: Synergy for a Better Tomorrow.”

“The technical committee has assembled one of the richest technical programs ever offered in the Kingdom,” said Abdulrahman S. Jarri, manager of Land Affairs at Saudi Aramco and chairman of OGEP-2010 Technical Committee. 

The program included an executive keynote and plenary session, 23 technical sessions, 15 speakers, poster sessions and three panel discussions. A pre-session geological field trip explored the Dammam Dome, and there were seven post-event workshops, along with an exhibition.

OGEP2 The Senior Vice President of Upstream Amin Nasser appears with Abdul-Rahman Al-Abdulkareem and the Rector and CEO of King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals Khalid Sultan during the awards ceremony for participants and supporters.

“Furthermore,” Jarri said, “we are introducing this year a young professional session where young talents will share with us their learning experiences. And last but not least, for our future industry colleagues and conference first timers, the program also includes for the first time a student-paper contest as part of the technical activities.”

In opening the event, Abdulrahman Al-Abdul Karim, counselor for the ministry’s Companies Affairs, emphasized the growing number of research centers already being built throughout the Kingdom.

In addition to the state-built research centers such as King Abdullah University of Science and Technology and the King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center, and those built by universities and Saudi Aramco, other service providers, such as Schlumberger and Baker Hughes, are now building private research centers in the Kingdom.

OGEP0 Abdulrahman S. Jarri, manager of Land Affairs at Saudi Aramco and chairman of OGEP-2010 Technical Committee, speaks at the summit.

These centers will play a significant role in the development of technologies needed by the industry at all stages, Al-Abdul Karim said.

Keynote speaker Khalid A. Al-Buraik, Saudi Aramco’s vice president of Northern Area Oil Operations, told the gathering that the real challenge facing scientists, engineers and specialists would be to develop new ways to reach and extract reserves in order to meet demand, which is expected to increase by 40 percent over the next 20 years as the world’s population reaches 9 billion.

He noted that although the decades ahead would see advancement in renewable sources of energy such as solar, nuclear and biotic energy, fossil fuel would remain the primary source of energy worldwide for decades to come.

Buraik said scientists have confirmed the existence of 14 trillion barrels of oil worldwide and that only about 1 trillion barrels had been produced to date. Recoverable oil, using existing technologies and methods, is estimated at 1.2 trillion barrels.

“It is expected that modern technologies used in the field of oil exploration and production will add 2 trillion barrels to this proven conventional oil reserve as well as 1.5 trillion of non-conventional barrels,” he said. “Thus, there are about 8.3 trillion barrels that are considered highly difficult to recover using known technologies, and this is the real challenge for the scientists and engineers to recover.”

One way to get at that challenging oil, he said, is through the development of talented people and the invention of new technologies. That’s where academic and industry collaboration comes in.

Also at the event, an Executive Keynote and Plenary Session was conducted and moderated by Abdullah A. Al Naim, vice president of Exploration.

Saudi Aramco showcased leading-edge upstream technologies and intelligent-field visualization technologies.

OGEP 2010 was organized by the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, KFUPM and the King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology. Saudi Aramco was a main sponsor.

EXPEC ARC Honors Top Talents

31 January 2011 | comments (0) | Saudi Aramco News | by

DHAHRAN, January 26, 2011 — The EXPEC Advanced Research Center (ARC) celebrated its 2010 Awards Ceremony during its recent International Advisory Council (IAC) meeting.

IAC_01 Members of EXPEC ARC’S International Advisory Council pose with honorees during the recent 2010 awards winners ceremony. Council members are, front row from left: Samer AlAshgar, Mohammad Al-Qahtani, Sidqi Abu-Khamsin, Farouk El-Baz, Amin Nasser, Larry Lake, Nafi Toksoz, Stephen Holditch and Nabeel Al-Afaleg. Award winners are, back row from left, are Dave Cantrell, Ali Dogru, Mohamed Noui-Mehidi, Adil Dossary, Suha Behaisi, Hamid Rashidi and Ahmed Bukhamseen.

At EXPEC ARC’s ninth IAC meeting Jan. 10-12, the council members reviewed select research activities, suggested future directions and recommended new and emerging technologies relevant to Saudi Aramco upstream business needs and challenges.

EXPEC ARC professionals presented topics such as technical milestones, future directions and research and development strategies. Council members then met with technologists for further discussion on special research.

“EXPEC ARC’s achievements are very impressive,” said Nafi Toksoz, IAC member.  “EXPEC ARC researchers are pushing the envelope to unmatched excellence in many areas and have even taken world leadership with their research as confirmed by the large number of prestigious scientific awards.”

Four years ago, EXPEC ARC established the IAC, composed of five world-renowned scientists from academia, to provide advice and guidance on the strategic directions of Saudi Aramco’s upstream research and development activities.

The members are Nafi Toksoz, director of the George R. Wallace Geophysical Observatory at MIT; Stephen Holditch, head of the Petroleum Engineering Department, Texas A&M; Farouq El-Baz, director of the Center for Remote Sensing, Boston University; Sidqi Abu-Khamsin, chairman of the Petroleum Engineering Department, King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals; and Larry Lake, W. A. “Monty” Moncrief Centennial Chair in Petroleum Engineering, University of Texas Austin.

The EXPEC ARC Awards Ceremony was attended by all five IAC members in addition to many in senior management. Petroleum scientist Rania Al-Geer, master of ceremonies, extended a warm welcome to all attendees and announced the award finalists and winners.

EXPEC ARC recognized its high achievers in nine award categories. (See breakout box). Everyone in EXPEC ARC can submit nominations, a committee of the chief technologists and the manager select the winners.

“We’ve had a wonderful, achievement-filled 2010,” said EXPEC ARC manager Samer S. AlAshgar. “However, we cannot and must not rest on our past success.  We need to build on it and grow. I’m confident 2011 will be more eventful, more fruitful and even more successful.”


The winners of the 2010 EXPEC ARC Awards are:

  • Safety Achievement Award — Adil Al-Dossary
  • Milestone Award — Mazen Kanj
  • Mentorship Award — Dave Cantrell
  • Effective Publication Award –  Mohammed Al-Khaldi
  • Best TWIX Presentation — Ahmed Bukhamseen
  • Creative Contribution Award — Mohamed Noui-Mehidi
  • Most Productive Technician — Hamid Al-Rashidi
  • Team Player — Suha Behaisi
  • Technology Deployment Award — GigaPOWERS Team

Employee’s Idea Wins on ‘Dragons’ Den’ Show

28 January 2011 | comments (1) | Saudi Aramco News | by

JIDDAH, January 26, 2011 – Ali Al-Zahrani from the EXPEC Advanced Research Center was one of the winning entrepreneurs during Saudi Arabia’s first season of the popular television show, “Dragons’ Den.

Dragon Ali Al-Zahrani said he got the idea for a floating plant watering system during a visit to King Abdullah University of Science and Technology.

After pitching his business idea, “Planting Without Water,” to a panel of Saudi venture capitalists, Al-Zahrani was able to secure investment financing to realize his vision.

Al-Zahrani’s idea reveals a novel method to grow plants offshore without the need to water them directly.

“I was thrilled when they announced I won, as the competition was intense,” said Al-Zahrani. “With this generous venture capital, I am now able to build prototypes of floating platforms in different sizes and turn my vision into reality.”

Al-Zahrani’s invention uses water surfaces, such as seawater, and strong sunshine to irrigate the plants. Using floating platforms with a mesh floor, fresh water evaporating from the seawater’s surface can be collected.

den Ali Al-Zahrani’s dream of building a floating platform upon which plants can be grown without watering may soon become a reality.

Due to the temperature difference, water droplets accumulate under the mesh floor, which contains plant seeds. In theory, these condensed water droplets will be more than the required water supply for the seeds.

The new technique could be of great help to farmers with limited access to water or during droughts. 

“The idea came to me when I participated in a visit last year to King Abdullah University of Science and Technology sponsored by the Saudi Arabian Section of the Society of Petroleum Engineers,” explained Al-Zahrani. “During the visit, I learned of a new research area at the university where they are growing wheat with seawater.”

“Launching my project will be very challenging. In order to gain support and make the project happen, I competed in the show to gain the backing of powerful business people who could convince the governor of the value of my idea,” Al-Zahrani said. “Their support helps in obtaining the permit to utilize the Kingdom’s shorelines for this project, and their scrutinizing questions helped me further solidify my plan.”  

“Al-Zahrani’s achievement illustrates the value that can result from sharing ideas and investigating the challenges others are facing in cross-disciplinary settings,” said Samer S. AlAshgar, EXPEC ARC manager. “He also sets a fine example for Saudi Aramco in his desire to bring new solutions to humanity.”

 “Dragons’ Den” is a series of reality television programs featuring entrepreneurs pitching their business ideas in order to secure financing from a panel of venture capitalists.

The show originated in Japan in 2001 and has been adapted by countries all over the world. Saudi broadcaster STV1 started the local production of “Dragons’ Den” last February.

Wasit Gas Bidders Selected

26 January 2011 | comments (0) | Saudi Aramco News | by

DHAHRAN, January 25, 2011 – Saudi Aramco has finalized its bid selection process for the Wasit Gas Program onshore facilities, selecting SK Engineering & Construction Co Ltd and SAMSUNG Engineering Ltd.

The contract packages to be awarded are as follows:

Inlet and Gas Facilities 

Saudi Aramco has selected SK Engineering & Construction Co Ltd for a Lump Sum Turn Key (LSTK) contract to perform the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) work for the inlet and gas facilities. The scope of this package includes building four (4) gas treating trains, flare and burn pit facilities, related electrical and control system including substations and process interface buildings.

Cogeneration and Steam Generation 

The company has selected SAMSUNG Engineering Ltd for a LSTK contract to perform the EPC of the cogeneration and steam generation facilities. The scope of this package includes building four (4) 150-megawatt cogeneration units, three boilers, central control building, and electrical and non-electrical utilities.

SRU and Utilities 

SK Engineering & Construction Co Ltd was selected for a LSTK contract to perform the EPC for the sulfur recovery units (SRU) and utilities facilities. The scope of this package includes building four (4) SRUs, sulfur loading facilities, main pipe way, utilities, related electrical and control system including substations and process interface building.

NGL Fractionation 

Saudi Aramco has selected SK Engineering & Construction Co Ltd for a LSTK contract to perform the EPC for NGL Fractionation.  The scope of this package includes NGL Inlet facilities, NGL fractionation facilities, product treating and storage, LT flare, control systems including substations and process interface buildings.

To meet market needs for local feedstock and support the national economy, the Wasit Gas Program would process 2,500 million standard cubic feet of non-associated Khuff Gas from Arabiyah-Hasbah offshore field with production start-up scheduled in 2014, Ahmed A. Al-Sulaim, manager of Wasit Projects said after the selection process was finalized.

A Leap Forward for Industrial Training

24 January 2011 | comments (0) | Saudi Aramco News | by

DHAHRAN, January 19, 2011 – The National Industrial Training Institute (NITI) project took a leap forward Dec. 22 when NITI’s Board of Trustees conducted its inaugural meeting.

NITI, an independent, not-for-profit training institution, is a joint project of Saudi Aramco and the Technical and Vocational Training Corp. (TVTC).

NITI Saudi Aramco executives and officials from the Technical and Vocational Training Corp. met Dec. 22 at the inaugural meeting of the National Industrial Training Institute’s Board of Trustees in Dhahran. A joint project of the two organizations, the institute will give thousands of young Saudis the chance for meaningful careers in the Kingdom’s energy sector.

Board members are:

  • Chairman — Mohammed A. Al-Omair, executive director of Refining and NGL Fractionation.
  • Vice chairman — Dr. Saleh A. Al-Amro, deputy governor of TVTC.
  • Member — Ali H. Al-Ghamdi, general manager of Southern Area Producing.
  • Member — Fuhaid A. Al-Subai’i, director of the Industrial Training Department.
  • Member — Fahad A. Al-Semari, senior accounting staff consultant, Treasury, Finance.

“There is a lot to do,” said Al-Omair in his welcoming remarks. “There are exciting times to come when we see the first certificate handed to the first NITI graduate. Every day counts. We are ready to serve the country with our minds and hearts.”

Nothing will stand in the way, he said, if it starts with a clear vision and an understandable mission.

Following a presentation on NITI, its background, work in progress, board responsibilities and milestones, the board discussed and issued resolutions on such matters as the charter and bylaws, financial issues, marketing strategy and stakeholders campaign, vision, mission, logo, Human Resources Development Fund representation, Steering Committee and the project timeline.

The steering committee approved NITI’s detailed design, arranged the bidding and set plans for awarding the construction contract. In the meantime, the Project Team has been preparing for marketing, training needs analysis, program development, set-up and readiness plans, and funding sources.

The Project Team holds members from Training and Development, Finance and IT, and has received support from other company organizations.

Also taking part in the meeting were Hamdan Al-Shaibani, NITI Project manager; Fahad Al-Mulhim, Marketing and Programs Development Team leader; Aiyd Al-Otaibi, Engineering, Set-Up and Readiness Team leader; Dr. Abdullah Al-Mulhim, TVTC representative; Mukhtar Haleeb, NITI HR consultant; and Abdulmajeed Seraj of Law.

Board members and meeting participants attended a luncheon hosted by Sameer A. Al-Tubayyeb, executive director of Employee Relations and Training. Huda M. Ghoson, general manager of Training and Development, was present at a reception for the board members.

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