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Punjab University aided research beneficial for industry

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Punjab University aided research beneficial for industry
« on: July 20, 2008, 11:28:21 AM »
Punjab University aided research beneficial for industry

Lahore: The successful completion of a research project on gas transmission pipeline is an excellent example of industry-academia linkage whereby industry benefited from university while the joint venture was accomplished at a cost of about one third of the international tender basis.

The project "Disbondment of 3L Epoxy/PE Coating and Integrity of Gas Transmission Pipeline" was a joint venture of Sui Southern Gas Company (SSGC), Punjab University's Institute of Chemical Engineering and Technology (ICET) and the Pakistan Science Foundation (PSF).

Former director of the PU Institute of Chemical Engineering and Technology Prof Dr Ijaz Hussain Khan was the principal investigator of the project while co-principal investigators included Prof Dr Muhammad Arif Butt and Prof Dr Javed Ahmed.

Talking about the project, Dr Ijaz Hussain Khan said corrosion threat to Pakistan's 10,000 kilometres long gas/oil transmission pipeline infrastructure was an engineering and economic problem.

He said coating of the pipeline was the first step towards corrosion control while the application of Cathodic Protection was the second step in this regard.

According to the executive summary of the project, SSGC has since 1990s followed an international trend in selecting coating system for its underground transmission pipelines. The summary further states SSGC and SNGPL have made use of two pre-dominant coating types in their networks including Coal Tar Enamel (CTE) and three layer coating system comprising of a fusion bonded epoxy primer often referred to as 3LPE.

"After few years of installation of the 3LPE coated pipelines in SSGC system, "disbondment of the coating" was discovered. This problem of "coating disbondment" was also faced by users worldwide," the summary added.

Dr IH Khan said SSGC management thus decided to conduct a joint project with the PU Institute of Chemical Engineering and Technology and the Pakistan Science Foundation, adding characterisation of coating disbondment and consequential effects on long-term integrity of pipelines were the main objectives of the project.

Giving further details about the project, Dr IH Khan said safety of the gas/oil pipeline infrastructure, environment and safety of public and property from hazards of coating failure and advancement of corrosion control technology were aims of the project.He further said the research work was conducted in detail including field visits by experts to the site of coating disbondment, site condition analyses and tests and studies in laboratories in Germany and Pakistan.

He said two Pakistani expatriates Dr Amir Hussain (Germany) and Dr Inam Khokhar (USA) were consultants of the project, adding however, they did not charge any consultancy fee.

Dr IH Khan further said that the joint research venture was accomplished at a cost of about one third of the international tender basis. It is important to mention here that Pakistan Science Foundation has awarded Rs 50,000 and an appreciation certificate to Dr Ijaz Hussain Khan for his highly commendable research work and successful completion of the project on gas transmission pipeline.

Dr IH Khan has said that credit for this project goes to the Punjab University, which is the mother of all varsities of the country, adding industries should trust academia and should benefit from its own researchers instead of totally relying on foreign consultants. Co-principal investigator of the project, Prof Dr Arif Butt who is former vice chancellor of the Punjab University said a PU student was also doing PhD on this subject under this project, adding it would be very beneficial for the country. He was of the view that close liaison between industry and academia could bring research to market, adding more and more linkages should be developed between both. The News