Qatar Petroleum (QP) and the Texas A&M University-Qatar celebrated the launching of the extension of the Texas-based Mary Kay O’Connor Process Safety Center here in Qatar on Monday. The Centre aims to conduct research to enhance safety process in the industries, a press statement said yesterday.
The event was held under the patronage of H E Dr Mohammed bin Saleh Al Sada, Minister of Energy and Industry, and Chairman and Managing Director of QP.
The Mary Kay O’Connor Process Safety Center-Qatar (MKOPSC-Qatar) will replicate all academic programmes and activities of the Center at the university’s main campus in College, Station, Texas.
Formed in 1995, the Centre was established in memory of Mary Kay O’Connor, an Operations Superintendent who was killed in an explosion on October 23, 1989 at a petrochemical complex in Pasadena, Texas. The center’s mission is to promote safety as a second nature in industry around the world with the objective of preventing future accidents. It is set to be an international leader in minimising losses within the process industry through safer processes, management, equipment and procedures.
In line with this, the MKOPSC-Qatar will provide science-based guidance, develop and disseminate best practices through consulting and short courses, provide benchmarking for process safety management systems and practices, and conduct research that would change the paradigm of process safety. It will also provide industry with a forum to exchange ideas and to advance process safety technologies in order to keep the industry competitive.
In his keynote address during the launching event, Dr Ali Hamed Al Mulla, Manager of Corporate Health, Safety and Environment at QP, said:
“With the patronage of Dr Al Sada, we have an opportunity to influence the center’s activities in a direct and continuous manner to promote safety as second nature in the industry in Qatar and to educate a new generation of engineers who are committed to safety. The inclusion of process safety in the academic curricula is a foundational element which will sow the seeds of process safety concepts in those aspiring to become future engineers, providing them with essential underlying principles to enable appreciation and application of process safety from the very beginning of their professional careers.”
Dr Mark H Weichold, Dean and CEO of Texas A&M University-Qatar said: “The University is proud to bring to the region a center known globally for its work in process safety practice and research. Process safety is essential to critical industries in Qatar, and the launch of the Mary Kay O’Connor Process Safety Center will provide resources of best practices and expertise, enhancing process safety in Qatar and ensuring that its key industries operate safely.”
Present were Dr Nazmul Karim, Holder of the Michael O’Connor Chair II and Head of the Artie McFerrin Department of Chemical Engineering at Texas A&M University; Dr Sam Mannan, Executive Director of the MKOPSC-Qatar; Dr Luc Véchot, Managing Director of the MKOPSC-Qatar and others.