Saudi Aramco had a strong presence at the recent International Petroleum Technology Conference (IPTC) held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The yearly event was held under the theme of ‘‘Innovation and Collaboration: Key to Affordable Energy,’’ and Saudi Aramco’s participation was led by Khaled A. Al Buraik, vice president of Petroleum Engineering and Development, whois also the director at large for the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE).
This year, the IPTC attracted more than 9,000 attendees from leading professional societies in the petroleum industry, including the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG), the European Association of Geologist and Engineers (EAGE), the Society of Exploration Geophysicists (SEG) and SPE.
The program consisted of a 67 session technical program, four panel sessions, three plenary sessions and an exhibition, all of which highlighted recent advancements in the oil and gas industry.
Saudi Aramco’s participation in IPTC was clear in the technical and plenary sessions and on the exhibition floor. More than 10 technical papers were presented spanning a wide range of topics in petroleum engineering and geosciences. Besides presenting in technical sessions, several scientists and engineers from Saudi Aramco co-chaired some of the technical sessions.
‘‘It is great to see Saudi Aramco participating in this major event where it gives opportunity for others to learn more about the company’s future plans as a leader in upstream,’’ said Al Buraik.
The Karan mega-project was a finalist for the IPTC ‘‘Excellence in Project Integration Award.’’ Karan is Saudi Aramco’s first offshore nonassociated gas development project intended for domestic energy supply. Discovered in 2006 in the thickest, extremely prolific and complex carbonate layers, the project was fast-tracked, taking only five years to go from discovery to production. The Karan project, which achieved 61.5 million safe manhours without a lost time incident, was a multidisciplinary team effort including geosciences, exploration, drilling, completion, rock and fluids evaluation, testing, pipelines and processing industry.
Abdulaziz O. Alkaabi, chief technologist of Reservoir Engineering Technology in the Upstream Advanced Research Center (EXPEC ARC), was a speaker in the ‘‘Current Challenges and Opportunities for the Future’’ technology plenary session. In his introduction presentation, Alkaabi presented the company’s perspective toward research and development (R&D) considering Saudi Aramco’s unique position as a large hydrocarbon resource and reserves owner and operator.
Such a position has shaped the company’s R&D policies toward a long-term outlook.
‘‘We invest significantly in high impact technologies that typically would have a long-term investment horizon, and in the end, manifests itself in a strategic portfolio of R&D projects that is more balanced with process changing, breakthrough type of projects and not on simple enhancements,’’ he said, adding that prioritization of research is guided by two main factors: business impact and uniqueness to the Kingdom.
After sharing some information on the company’s flagship research programs, Alkaabi concluded his presentation by highlighting Saudi Aramco’s global R&D efforts and the local research eco-system.
On the exhibit floor, Saudi Aramco’s booth was a hive of activity. The objective of the booth was to showcase the company’s upstream technologies in petroleum engineering and geosciences. The booth had several daily presentations describing recent advancements and achievements by the company.
Overall, the event provided the perfect setting for companies and organizations to showcase their technologies and achievements in the oil and gas industry. Saudi Aramco’s participation was well received by IPTC organizers and attendees.