Saudi Aramco unveils its ‘Fourth industrial revolution centre’

Oil Review ME
24 MAR 2019


Saudi Aramco has unveiled its new ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’ (4IR) Centre, a remodelled and vastly expanded office wing at Dhahran
fourth industrial revolution centre

The 4IR centre will play a pivotal role in enhancing its workforce’s technical skills and bringing advanced technology capabilities to realise the digital transformation vision of the company.

The centre will help the company’s operational performance to enable greater efficiencies and significant cost savings and further strengthen its role in the oil and gas industry.

Ahmad A. Al-Sa’adi, senior vice-president of technical services, said, “We are excited about the potential of the centre. It will play a vital role in accelerating the digital transformation across Saudi Aramco, be pivotal in enabling a paradigm shift for our operations through more digital technologies while unlocking new business and operating models.”

Technology Zones:

The centre is designed to support end-to-end case development throughout its design, ideation, prototyping, piloting, and full-scale deployment.

The facility features 279 sq m of video walls, with a total of more than 109mn pixels pitch that split into multiple clusters and zones.

Visitors are welcomed by a ‘V-receptionist’ hologram that provides safety instructions and gives an overview of the centre. At the heart of the centre is the Artificial Intelligence (AI) Hub’s, ringed by a massive concave video screen displaying more than 20 operational solutions.

The AI Hub focuses on developing advanced analytics and machine learning solutions in hydrocarbon-related applications. Big data and advanced analytics use innovative solutions in this domain to visualise and predict the performance of critical Saudi Aramco assets.

This hub combines in-house development with external tools to enable the company’s subject matter experts to make timely decisions to improve the availability, use and efficiency of assets. The value and cost savings realised from these solutions highlight the significant impact on the operations and business of the company.

Next to the AI Hub is the ‘VR Zone’, which, among other capabilities, is used to develop, prototype, and train for augmented and virtual reality. This hub can be used to visualise plant assets and get a real sense of plant experience from a simulation booth.

The centre has the ability to demonstrate operational use of air, ground and underwater robots through the UAV space. This section combines technologies that support a variety of different applications, including methane detection, emergency response, inspection services, project monitoring, inventory management, and many others, to reduce costs, improve efficiency, and improve health, safety, and environment.