A team of 12 staff members from Ibri College of Technology visited the Mazoon Dairy Company on Thursday, 27 February 2020. Mazoon Dairy Company in the Sultanate of Oman is one of the largest companies in the country with a capital of OMR 100 million, founded on 18 October 2017. It is located in the Al Buraimi Governate and is spread over 15 square kilometres. The dairy farm has a capacity of approximately 7000 cows and the central processing plant is capable of producing million litres of milk each day. The farm began with 3500 milking cows. It is predicated that the plant will increase the milking cows’ number to 25,000 by 2026. Currently, 15 sheds maintain a temperature of 25 0 C through a cooling system.
The faculty members who visited the plant were Mr Arthur Davis (Lecturer, Mechanical Engineering), Dr Rehna V. Jameela (Lecturer, Electronics Engineering), Ms Subha Bharathi (Lecturer Electrical Engineering), Dr Sharmila Deve (Lecturer Electrical Engineering), Mr Ganesh Reddy(Lecturer, Electrical Engineering), Mr Veera Sivakumar (Lecturer, Electrical Engineering), Mr Rajesh Goud (Lecturer, Mechanical Engineering), Mr Krishnakumar (Lecturer, Mechanical Engineering), Mr Mangesh Ramdasji (Lecturer Information Technology), Mr Ali Al Alawi (Head of OJT), Mr Shafi Al Shukri (Technician) and Mr Reynaldo Franco (Technician).
The main purpose of the visit was to:
- establish industrial relationships between Mazoon Dairy Company and Ibri College of Technology
- do collaborative work in finding solutions related to plant process problems
- get opportunities for OJT and industrial visits for students
- find Research and Consultancy Opportunities.
Insights from the visit
After reaching the power plant, the plant manager welcomed the visitors and gave an introductory presentation. The team visited the HVAC System in the plant which uses compressed ammonia for cooling the water and maintaining the required temperature, elaborately demonstrated by Mr Charles Rahjasekaran, the process manager. All the system-processing operations are controlled through SCADA.
The water treatment plant in the facility uses RO technology to reduce TDS levels in the water and uses more than eight levels to reduce TDS levels. Plant uses 4-5 litres of water in order to produce one litre of milk. The company is expecting the water recycling plant with TDS levels below 100 in order to reduce water requirements.
All automatically required hydraulic operations in the plant are carried with three compressors which maintain a pressure of 7.5 -8 bar. 400V Delta connected three-phase squirrel cage induction motors are used to drive the compressors.
A fire tube boiler heats the water to a temperature of 1800 C for bottle packing, cleaning operations, etc.
Our team found serval opportunities like RO plant for reducing TDS, bio-gas plant and assistance in maintaining the automated systems.
Another visit is planned for the near future to establish an industry to institutional relationship.
The Risk Management Committee of the Engineering Department organised an awareness programme on Risk Identification Techniques for Advanced Diploma level students on 10 March, 2020 from 8 to 9 am, in B115 (Engineering Building).
Mr J. Stephen Leon, coordinator of the Risk Management Committee for the Engineering Department, conducted the programme.
The presentation started with an explanation of different categories of risks that can occur in institutions. There was a detailed discussion on classifying the identified risks as strategic type, operational type, financial type, compliance type and reputational type. A clear explanation was given of the Risk Management Policy.
At the end of the session, different methods of risk identification techniques were presented. A clear explanation was given on how to rank the identified risks, to give priority for managing them. The members in the Risk Management Committee were introduced to the students. A practice was given to write risks in the risk register.
All the participants actively participated in the awareness programme.
Ibri College of Technology sent three Engineering students to represent the college in the Oman Arab Bank (OAB) Robotics Challenge and Gathering held on 3 March 2020 at Al Musanna College of Technology.
Mr Osama Bin Abdullah Al Shaili competed in the Robotics Challenge and won the third-place award.
OAB has set its sights to be a pioneer in digital banking in the Sultanate of Oman. In line with this, Oman Arab Bank launched a Robotic Process Automation System, which claims to be the first of its kind in the Sultanate. This system handles most of the daily banking transactions, performing at high efficiency, accuracy, and speed.
OAB, in turn, became highly interested in automation and robotics, and worked in association with Higher Education Institutions (HEI) to organise and sponsor an annual Robotics Challenge Competition and Gathering.
The robotics challenge has three rounds: (1) The robot must detect a fire/flame inside a circular area whose circumference was drawn with a black line. The robot must not step out of the area by using a colour sensor. After detecting the fire/flame, the fan must switch on to extinguish the fire. (2) Similar to game of bowling, the robot should pick up the ball and throw it on a straight line to the hit pins. (3) The robot must traverse a line or route with a precision of 90-degree rotations.
The Engineering Department of Ibri College of Technology held the annual SORESA on 4 March 2020 at the Lecture Theatre. It kicked off with an inaugural programme at around 10 am with guests, college administrators, and several Engineering staff and students in attendance.
Several technical presentations were scheduled for the workshop, which was highlighted by Mr Hariharan S., training administrator of ENGIE STOMO, who spoke much about renewable energy systems that are already in place worldwide and projects that his company have undertaken and currently engaged in.
Two of the Electrical Engineering lecturers of the Department presented the pertinent topics:
- Dr Sharmila Deve V. - Renewable Energy Electrification in Oman: Importance, Initiatives and Interpretation
- Mr Veera Sivakumar - HVDC Transmission for Renewable Energy Integration Technology
Several Engineering students also presented relevant topics to spread more knowledge on renewable energy sources and engage or expose students more on the importance of active participation in technical seminars and workshops.
- Extraction of Bio Ethanol from Waste Dates - A Green Energy Perspective to Eradicate Exhaust Emission Impacts in the Sultanate of Oman by Mr Dawoud Sulaiman Saif Sulaiman Al Rubaiai, Mr Abdulwahed Abdullah Said Al Yahyaai, and Mr Azan Salim Ali Al Balushi, Mechanical Engineering students
- Harnessing Wind Energy from Moving Vehicles - Wind Force for Highway Lighting by Ms Abeer Majid Saif Al Maqbali and Ms Maryam Nasser Said Al Hinai, Electrical Engineering students
- Application of Nanoparticles in Solar Cells by Mr. Salah Said Ali Rashid Al Ghafri, Mr Hazza Humaid Said Al-Omari, and Mr Khalifa Sultan Abdullah Al Hasani, Mechanical Engineering students
The closing and awarding ceremony concluded the event at around 1:30 pm to give thanks and appreciate all those who shared their knowledge and expertise, as well as those who have worked hard to organise and conduct the event.
A group of 18 Second Semester Bachelor students and two electrical engineering faculties (Mr Chandra Sekhara B.L and Mr Reddy Ganesh) of Ibri College of Technology, Ibri, visited the NOMAC Power Pant which is located in Ibri, on Thursday, 13 February 2020. The main aim of the industrial visit was to provide exposure to students about the practical working environment.
Mr Anwar Alzahli, Operation Manager, and his team received and welcomed the visitors, explained guided safety measures and rules followed in the plant and also gave a detailed plant operation from mechanical turbines to electrical grid connection.
The plant uses four gas turbines each capacity of 235 Megawatts and two steam turbines, each generating 283 Megawatts of mechanical power. These turbines are coupled to generators in order to generate electrical power. The steam turbine coupled to a generator produces 20KV and a gas turbine coupled generator produces 21KV voltage. The generated electrical power of all these generators are stepped up to grid voltage and are connected to the grid through step-up transformers. All the control operations of the plant are monitored through SCADA. The plant uses an automatic control system that has a facility that controls inputs and is automatically adjusted, based on demand on the system within its capacity.
The company has accepted a contract to start a solar power plant over an area of 6 square kilometres. The team members explained the protective schemes used for protection of alternators and transformers.
During the session, the students interacted with all team members of the company very effectively, particularly on the generation of power, alternator, turbine working, protection, control of power supplied to grid. All the students expressed their thanks to the officials of the company for the opportunity given. This visit was highly useful for the students to enhance their knowledge in areas such as Electrical Machines and its control, Power Generation, Protection and Grid connection and its control.
Ibri College of Technology, as a part of the quality enhancement process, initiated a benchmarking visit to the Vocational Training College, Ibri on Thursday, 6 February 2020. The team of seven staff members from the Engineering Department participated in this benchmarking process were Mr Nasser Al Shammakhi (HoD, Engineering), Dr Illankumaran (HoS, Electrical and Electronics Engineering Section), Dr Elangovan (HoS, Mechanical Engineering Section), Dr Rehna V. Jameela (Lecturer, Electronics Engineering), Mr. Abid Siddique (Lecturer, Physics), Mr Arthur Davis (Lecturer, Mechanical Engineering) and Mr Reddy Ganesh (Lecturer, Electrical Engineering).
Purpose of the visit
The main purpose of the visit was to enhance interaction and maintain public relations between Ibri College of Technology and the Vocational Training College and to explore opportunities for collaboration, resource sharing for students, along with openings for research and consultancy activities.
Insights from the visit
The dean and staff of the Vocational Training College welcomed the visitors and gave a brief introduction on the activities of the college. Mr Waleed, Head of Engineering, walked the team through the electrical and electronics labs, mechanical engineering labs, carpentry and civil engineering labs, art and craft training sessions etc. The classrooms, equipped with multifunctional smart boards, were highly admirable. Different types of 3D printers and CNC machines are used by staff and students. The feasibility of shifting a major CNC machine to Ibri College of Technology for a short period of time was also discussed. It was later decided, based on expert observation, that it is not advisable to move the machine as it is highly sensitive and may lose its precision once dismantled.
A team of eight staff members from Ibri College of Technology visited the Nomac Ibri Power Plant on Thursday, 20 February 2020. This company is the first independent power plant in the Al Dhahirah region. The plant has a capacity of generating 1509.1 MW of electricity per day with an efficiency of 58%. The company has signed contracts to start a solar power plant with a capacity of 500 MW AC and 600 MW DC power generation spanning over an area of 6 square kilometres. They are planning to use Bio facial PV model (2 sided solar panels) for the first time in Oman. Commissioning will start in August 2020.
Dr Illankumaran (HoS, Electrical and Electronics Section), Dr Sharmila Deve (Lecturer Electrical Engineering), Dr Rehna V. Jameela (Lecturer, Electronics Engineering), Mr Abid Siddique (Physics Coordinator), Mr Arthur Davis (Lecturer, Mechanical Engineering), Mr Ali Al Alawi (Head of OJT), Mr Manikandan S. (OJT Coordinator, Engineering Department) and Mr Shafi Al Shukri (Technician) were among the visiting members.
Purpose of the visit
The main purpose of the visit was to enhance interaction and maintain public relations between Ibri College of Technology and the Nomac Power Plant, and to explore opportunities for OJT and industrial visits for students along with openings for research and consultancy services.
Insights from the visit
After reaching the power plant, the HSE Engineer, Dr Mirza Muneer from the Health and Safety wing of the substation, briefed us regarding the safety rules observed in the power plant. Mr Mohammed Al Shueili, the plant manager, welcomed the visitors, gave an introductory presentation and walked us through the activities of the power plant. The team visited the heat recovery steam generator, main air compressor, RO (Reverse Osmosis) plant, DM (Demineralisation) plant, fire water pump stations, diesel and loading areas, etc. Waste management practices adopted by the plant were briefed as the plant is designed to be a zero-waste plant. The mechanism of segregating hazardous, non-hazardous and recyclable waste was also explained.
Furthermore, the following were also shown to the team:
- Gas turbines (four gas turbines, each with a capacity of 235 MW)
- Steam turbines (two steam turbines, each with a capacity of 283 MW)
- Water treatment area and FPS equipment area;
- Fuel oil unloading and pumping area;
- Gas treatment and compression area
- Black start generators area; and
- Storm water basins and evaporation ponds.
Outcome of the visit:
- The team was able to experience modern practices pertaining to generation, distribution, and maintenance of power.
- The plant manager stated that:
- The requirements of both institutions can be met by a collaborative mechanism which will help to strengthen the relationship between Ibri College of Technology and Ibri Power Plant.
- As a part of corporate social responsibility, they are ready to extend support to Ibri College of Technology to train our students and minimise the gap between industry and academia.
- There was only one student who did OJT last year in Nomac. From July 2020, they plan to accommodate more OJT students. They have promised to contact Ibri College of Technology as soon as they are ready for OJT.
- Job opportunities are currently managed through the Ministry of Manpower, offering opportunities for all graduates across Oman, but preferences are given for potential local candidates from Ibri.
- The plant manager and his team at Nomac were invited for SORESA, a one-day workshop on The Scope of Renewable Energy Systems and its Applications which is organised by the Engineering Department, Ibri College of Technology on 4 March 2020.
The Research and Consultancy Committee, Engineering Department, conducted a guest lecture on “Research Opportunities in Oman in the Field of Renewable Energy” on 13 February 2020, 11 am to 12 pm, n the Free Access Lab to all Engineering Department faculty members.
Dr Sharmila Deve Venkatachalam, Lecturer, was the resource speaker, and explained importance of renewable energy usage in Oman; initiatives taken by Oman’s energy sector so far; energy resources available in Oman; plans for renewable energy mix in Oman’s energy sector; and the current scenario of Oman’s energy sector. These detailed scenario discussions help to find active research areas in the renewable energy sector.
Furthermore, the speaker discussed the optimal allocation of renewable energy resources; different optimisation techniques available; MPPT for solar and wind power; power quality improvement based on Oman’s grid structure; hybrid renewable energy sources; restructuring of Oman’s power system; deregulation of Oman’s energy market; waste management of renewable energy; potential resources available in Oman and unnoticed issues in the renewable energy sector. These topics cover the research scope in Electrical, Electronics, Mechanical, Information Technology and Business studies.
The speaker concluded the wide research opportunities in implementation of renewable energy resources in Oman’s energy sector.
Ibri College of technology regularly organises blood donation camps in association with the Regional Hospital, Ministry of Health, Ibri. A blood donation camp was held on 4 February 2020. Hospitals keep stock of different groups of blood in their blood bank to meet emergency needs during surgery conditions. As a part of community support, students and staff donated 30 units of blood during the camp.
Benefits of blood donation:
- Reduces the risk of heart attacks and strokes by reducing the viscosity of the blood.
- Risk of cancer is minimised by the reduction of excess iron in the blood.
- Fitness is ensured by burning excess calories.
“Donate blood to save lives”
As part of their course “Cable, Splicing, and Telecommunication Networks”, a group of 17 Engineering students, along with their teachers, Mr R. Devasenathipathy, visited Oman Fiber Optic Company in Rusayl, Muscat, on Tuesday, 11 February 2020. It was a real-life learning experience for the students from our college. It is our belief that arranging visits to companies such as OFO will boost our students’ abilities.
During their visit, students were able to experience how the different types of fibre optic cables are manufactured. OFO (Oman Fiber Optic) offers various types of fibre cable suited for high-bit rate, explosive transmission capacity and long transmission distances. OFO has been drawing Single Mode fibre for captive cabling and is the first company in the region to produce G.652 D compliant fibre. OFO also provides fibre for regional and metropolitan networks to operate on terabit transmission rates. OFO established a second new division in 2010, known as the Telecommunications Solutions Division (TSD). This division focuses on turnkey system integration projects involving the design, deployment and operations and maintenance of complex customer networks. In addition, the quality control and industrial safety procedures of the company were explained to the students.
In our quest for the provision of quality education and to contribute to the national development endeavours of the Sultanate, this industrial visit finds a way for our students to acquire job market relevant knowledge and industrial experience for their future, both inside and outside the college.
Students were exposed to the real-time environment of telecommunications. Oman Fiber Optic staff members extended their excellent services during their busy schedule by engaging our IBRICT students as part of their growth.