8/28/2008 Composites guru reinforces Furmanite’s leading role


Composites guru reinforces Furmanite’s leading role

A leading specialist in composites technology for repair and strengthening of industrial assets, Dr Paul Hill, has joined Furmanite, the specialist engineering and technical services company. Hill will head up and develop the company’s composite repair service around the world as global business development manager for composites with effect from today, 1st August 2008.

Hill has worked closely with Furmanite before while with the former DML (Devonport Management Limited), when he was technical manager for the alliance between Furmanite and DML Composites, bringing what was then still a relatively new technology to the oil and gas, power, and other industry sectors, for on-line repairs and strengthening for industrial plant. His appointment now as global business development manager with Furmanite is a significant move for the company in strengthening its composite repair capability, and further reinforcing its position as the industry leader in live repairs.

Hill has worked with composite materials targeted for use in the oil and gas industry for some 20 years, following completion of his PhD at Cambridge where he investigated methods for predicting the performance and durability of fibre-reinforced polymers in offshore and civil engineering environments. He joins Furmanite from Clock Spring where, as composite technology manager, his role involved introducing additional composite repair systems to augment the company’s product range and capabilities.

Prior to this he was business manager responsible for the composites group at DML including financial, business development, manpower and technical management for both construction (marine fabrication) and repair work (bridges, industrial plant, trains and more). While there he oversaw the design, manufacture and installation of the first composite primary structure in the North Sea. Before that he spent seven years with the former British Gas, looking at the use of fibre-reinforced polymers within the gas industry, on and offshore. His work here again focused on life prediction, with a view to generating confidence to use these materials in demanding applications from offshore structures to high pressure storage.

In the late 1990s Hill was a key driver behind the work of the Industry Workshop (including AEA Technology and Shell) to develop guidance for design and application of composite repairs, and latterly in working with the ASME committee to establish the ASME standard for composite repairs, approved in the early 2000s, and subsequent ISO (TS 24817) certification.

Furmanite International managing director Paul Brown said: “We are absolutely delighted to have Paul join us. With his extensive experience in this specialist field he is well recognised and highly respected, and brings an added breadth and depth of technical knowledge to Furmanite’s already well known carbon fibre composites capability. Paul’s expertise will give us the further technical and practical support to enable us to develop this exciting area of the business, which offers such high value potential to operators in the oil and gas and other industries around the world, where downtime is costly and undesirable. We are very pleased to welcome him on board.”

Hill commented: “This is an exciting step, enabling me to work with an established provider of composite repairs, combined with a broad range of other specialist engineering services to provide the optimum solution to meet customers’ needs. Having led the technical and commercial development of composite repairs for ships, trains, bridges, and underground structures as well as pipes, I will now be applying this experience to extend Furmanite’s range of composites capabilities, while still retaining the quality for which the company is renowned. Furmanite’s existing in-house design team has an impressive track record in utilising this technology, and I look forward to building on this with them, bringing together the experience they have gained in the US, Australasia, Middle East and Europe, to give us unparalleled capability and experience in the marketplace.”

Composite repairs enable full structural strength and pressure integrity to be restored, permanently, to corroded or damaged plant and pipelines, with no shutdown or disruption to production. The repairs can be designed to accommodate large diameters, long lengths, high pressures, and high temperatures, for pipelines, tanks, vessels and other structures, with a design life of up to 25 years or more. They require no hot work or prefabrication, and are corrosion-free. The technology represents high value to operators in industries such as oil and gas, hydrocarbon processing, chemical, pharmaceutical and nuclear power among others, offering full rehabilitation with no disruption to operation, when often the only alternative would be costly shutdown, to cut and replace

Furmanite composite repairs are fully compliant with ASME and ISO international standards.

Sarah Manwaring-White, Keep in Touch Ltd,
Tel: +44 (0)1451 844 488
Email: sarah_mw@keepintouch.co.uk

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