The EXPEC Advanced Research Center recently won two prominent awards during the Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference.

The EXPEC Advanced Research Center (EXPEC ARC) won two prominent awards during the Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference (ADIPEC) Awards Gala Dinner — the largest oil and gas awards event in the Middle East.

The ‘Uthmaniyah CCS and CO2 EOR Project took first place for the “Best Oil & Gas Health, Safety and Environment Project,” and Mohannad Abdelaziz was selected as a winner in the “Young ADIPEC Engineer” award category. Saudi Aramco won three of the eight awards with the Production Facilities and Development Department selected in the “Best Oil & Gas Innovation or Technology” category for Big Bore Gas Completions.

The company was also recognized as a finalist in two categories: Khalid R. Alnoaimi for “Best Dissertation of the Year,” and Mohammed Geer for “Young ADIPEC Engineer,” both from EXPEC ARC.

The ADIPEC awards recognize organizations and individuals that have been the most successful in setting new standards of innovation and excellence in the Middle East oil and gas industry. During the celebration, eight prestigious awards were presented to winners in seven categories.

HSE in ‘Uthmaniyah

Saudi Aramco launched the Kingdom’s first carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) and CO2 Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) project at ‘Uthmaniyah. The project is the first of its kind in the Middle East in terms of scale and operation, and one of the largest in the world. CO2 injection started in July 2015.

“This is a long-term project for the company with the primary objective to test the feasibility of permanently sequestering a portion of the injected CO2 through enhanced oil recovery” said Sunil Kokal, project leader with the EXPEC ARC Reservoir Engineering Technology Team.

The project is part of Saudi Aramco’s corporate carbon management strategy and road map. Implementation of the project demonstrates that the company is part of the solution to proactively address global environmental challenges and reduce its carbon footprint. The project is the epitome of a large multidisciplinary effort by a passionate team to address environmental issues and push the envelope on the monitoring and surveillance aspects. It involves many of the firsts in terms of technology deployment — some for the first time in the Kingdom — some for the first time in the Middle East, and some for the first time in the world. During the 18 months of CO2 injection, the response from the project has been very positive — both in terms of sequestration and oil production.

The long-term, high-impact project has been widely recognized during its deployment stages. Earlier in 2016, the Carbon Capture CO2 EOR project also won the Energy Institute’s “Environment Award,” and in 2015, the CO2 EOR demonstration project won the “Enhanced Oil Recovery Project of the Year” during the Arabian Oil & Gas Middle East awards.

The empowerment that young professionals experience in EXPEC ARC and the encouragement to innovate and realize our visions are some of the many benefits of working here — Mohannad Abdelaziz

Abdelaziz Excels

Since joining EXPEC ARC in 2012, Abdelaziz has excelled as a young research engineer in oil and gas production technology research and development. Abdelaziz earned his B.S. in Mechatronics Engineering (first honors) from the University of Jordan and a M.S. in Mechanical Engineering (first honors) from King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST).

With a solid foundation in electrical and mechanical engineering, Abdelaziz was an effective member working toward the success of several award-winning projects such as the Manara Intelligent Completions and Well Lateral Intervention Tool. He came up with the idea of developing a unique untethered robotic platform as a novel intelligent rigless intervention method and translated the idea into a development project with the proof of concept completed and the first field prototype to commence soon. He is an active member in the artificial lift focus area working on field testing the innovative technology of cable deployed electrical submersible pump ESP (CD-ESP), developing a shallow set subsurface safety valve for CD-ESP, and leading efforts for ESP intelligent data analytics.

“I am very fortunate to learn from, and work with, EXPEC ARC professionals across multiple disciplines who possess top-notch oil and gas expertise,” said Abdelaziz. “The empowerment that young professionals experience in EXPEC ARC and the encouragement to innovate and realize our visions are some of the many benefits of working here.”

This June, Abdelaziz will finish his distance learning studies to obtain his second master’s degree from Heriot-Watt in Petroleum Engineering. Abdelaziz is an active Young Researcher committee member and one of the founding officers for the first KAUST alumni chapter in Saudi Arabia. He has twice received the EXPEC ARC SPARX (Special Achievement Recognition of Excellence) award, has filed three patents and published five international publications.

“Such steady recognition by ADIPEC and other award organizations over the years in a variety of categories demonstrates the high-impact contributions by EXPEC ARC innovators who lead and influence our industry’s research,” said Ali A. Al-Meshari, EXPEC ARC acting manager. “2016 proved to be a record year for EXPEC ARC, bringing 21 international awards to the company.”