Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS (UTP) recently organised its second professorial lecture. The lecture was delivered by Professor Dr Kurian V. John on the topic of “Floating Platforms in South East Asia/Australasia and UTP's Strategic Role”.
Professor Kurian is a professor at the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department and Director of the Mission Oriented Research of Deepwater Technology at UTP. He has over 48 years of experience and has been teaching in Oman, Nigeria, India and Malaysia. He has broad knowledge and experience in teaching, researching and providing consultancy in offshore structures.
He has also published over 200 research publications in journals and conferences and completed 30 research projects worth RM4 million.
In this lecture, Professor Kurian described the current state of deepwater technology related to floating platforms in the global, regional and national scenario and highlighted UTP’s capability for research and consultancy related to this technology.
He explained that out of a total of 20,000 offshore platforms in existence or under construction globally, 270 are deepwater floating facilities or floaters up to a water depth of 2900m. The floaters belong to five different technology concept categories namely Tension Leg Platform, Semi-submersible, Spar, Floating Production Storage and Offloading (FPSO) and Floating Liquidified Natural Gas (FNLG).
Among the 270 floaters, 50 are operating in South East Asia and Australasia, and Malaysia has at least one platform in each of these technological concept categories. This has resulted in bringing the top oil and gas companies and the associated industries, contractors, consultants to the South East Asia and Australasia regions.
UTP has risen to the occasion by collaborating with the oil and gas industry to evaluate their research, consultancy needs and providing solution in deepwater floating facilities or floaters. It has the capability to conduct the ‘Reliability and Integrity Assessment Studies’ on the existing floaters for use beyond their service life.
The university’s recent collaboration with Curtin University, Perth Australia has paved steps for focused research and consultancy for FPSOs and FLNGs. Incidentally, this makes UTP the first university in Malaysia collaborating with the Australian university for research in offshore engineering starting with deepwater floating platforms.
UTP’s Professorial Lecture Series is established with the aim of promoting and celebrating newly appointed and newly promoted professorial academic staff. The lecture series provides an opportunity for the academics to discuss their research interests.
It also provides a platform for the university’s academics to engage and stimulate the intellectual curiosity of the academics, students and alumni as well as research collaborators and industry partners.
The inaugural UTP Professorial Lecture Series was held in 2012. It featured Professor Ir Dr Ahmad Fadzil Mohamad Hani, UTP Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic, who delivered a topic on “Medical Imaging – Bringing Pixels to the Life Sciences”.