GlassPoint: glass innovation project in southern Oman

The Amal West oil field in southern Oman, controlled by Petroleum Development Oman, has an innovative solar system to generate the steam needed in the extraction of heavy oil is undergoing tests. The installation enables to use cheaper, lightweight materials, while the use of glass also protects the equipment from dust and the elements.

Oman, a small country on the south-eastern tip of the Arabian Peninsula, may have found a solution for the energy needed to ‘extract’ the heavy oil it has in abundance. In fact, at Petroleum Development Oman’s (PDO) Amal West oil field in southern Oman, a California-based company called GlassPoint has installed an innovative solar system that seeks to assist in the steam-generation process by boiling water with sunshine.
From outside, the GlassPoint installation is nothing like a normal solar project, as it is not photovoltaic-based, and there are no solar-concentrating dishes. Instead, these glasshouses are filled with flimsy mirrors. This is made possible by Glasspoint’s technique, with enables to use cheaper, lightweight materials. The glass also protects the equipment from dust and the elements.
The Oman project, covering 4 acres and generating the equivalent of 7 mw of energy per day, is only a test pilot. But so far the tests look good.
“Such innovative use of glass technology is a clear indicator of the efforts companies looking to penetrate the Gulf region are prepared to extend to,” says Derek Burston, exhibition director Gulf Glass 2013. “It’s clear that is why although many other markets are slowing at present, the MENA sector is continuing to prove its credentials as a major glass consuming market,” he adds.
Gulf Glass 2013 is the fifth in the biennial series, and is on target to attract over 220 exhibitors to the Dubai World Trade Centre in September. With a record number of pre-event registrations already being seen, the timing of the event – falling a year from glasstec – has seen it emerge as a new, meeting place for the industry in the year’s between the popular Duesseldorf show.
“The glass industry needs someone easy to get to, and preferably with a dynamic market on its doorstep,” adds Burston “and having spent six years lobbying to get the show to Dubai, we are convinced that Gulf Glass will continue to grow as a biennial, global meeting event,” he concludes.
More details on the show can be found at www.glassinthegulf.com or by contacting the team directly on des@gattacaltd.com.