Saudi Aramco and Baker Hughes, a GE company (BHGE) today signed a memorandum of understanding to create a new joint venture facility in Saudi Arabia to manufacture non-metallic materials which will be used in a variety of areas of the energy industry. This agreement supports Saudi Aramco's strategy to play a leading role in accelerating the deployment of non-metallic materials globally.
The focus on non-metallic materials is intended to add to the efficiency and reliability of operational assets by reducing the effects of corrosion. The joint venture will initially focus on non-metallic reinforced thermoplastic pipes as a first and critical step towards developing such capabilities in Saudi Arabia.
Welcoming this partnership with BHGE, Saudi Aramco's Senior Vice President for Technical Services, Ahmad Al Sa'adi said: “This partnership with BHGE is another step in Saudi Aramco's journey towards expanding the use of innovative non-metallic materials in its operations. Saudi Aramco has successfully deployed more than 5,000 kilometers of non-metallic pipes, resulting in a significant increase in efficiency and reduction in maintenance and replacement costs across the company's operations. Producing these materials in the Kingdom would also unlock opportunities for local manufacturers and facilitate knowledge transfer.”
Neil Saunders, CEO of BHGE Oilfield Equipment, said: “As a full stream oil and gas service and technology provider, we have a deep background driving non-metallic product development that will benefit a wide range of industries. Saudi Aramco's vision to expand their product development in the region aligns with our vision to support innovation and manufacturing in Saudi Arabia.”
Non-metallic applications are deployed in various industries, including oil and gas, construction, automotive, packaging and renewable energy to manufacture products including flowlines, downhole production tubing, vessels, pumps, and cooling towers, all of which are manufactured from non-metallic materials such as plastic, carbon fiber, and glass fiber.
Saudi Aramco recently opened the Non-metallic Innovation Center in the United Kingdom in collaboration with the UK-based Welding Institute and the National Structural Integrity Research Centre to conduct research and development of non-metallic technologies. The center collaborates with leading academic institutions and manufacturers to develop, test, and market new products.