Raúl Alonso
Director General
América En Triunfo
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View from the Top

Green Robotic Cleaning Systems Increase Safety

Wed, 01/18/2017 - 23:50

Q: How does América En Triunfo serve the Mexican oil and gas market?

A: We have more than 15 years’ experience in the Mexican oil and gas market and our family was the first to introduce high pressure water cleaning technology in the country. We started out working directly with PEMEX, introducing automated high-pressure cleaning technologies.

In the past PEMEX used high-pressure water systems for cleaning in its refineries but those were manual systems that led to many accidents, some of them fatal. América En Triunfo automates these cleaning and maintenance tasks so that workers do not face any safety risks.

Since placing our systems in PEMEX’s facilities there has not been one safety-related incident caused by high-pressure water cleaning systems. The technology we use is sourced from European countries such as the Netherlands, Germany and Italy.

Q: How do the technologies offered by América En Triunfo help companies increase efficiency and safety standards?

A: We decided to start América En Triunfo to address the technology needs of the Mexican oil and gas market. One of the first firms we worked with was Blastrac, a Dutch company that develops robotic solutions for surface preparation with shotblast technology. Shotblasting uses metallic pieces powered by propellers. The pieces collide with a metallic surface to remove excess paint, preparing it for repainting.

We did this type of work in PEMEX’s refinery in Ciudad Madero. Before using América En Triunfo’s technology, PEMEX used contaminating and risky technologies that required many workers to operate them. These types of cleaning tasks used to take four to five months to complete but now we can do it in seven days. América En Triunfo offers quicker and after results due to our remote-controlled technology. It is also environmentally and ecologically friendly. Our product is recyclable and does not produce polluting dust. One of our policies is to offer biodegradable, nonpolluting and environmentally friendly technologies.

Q: What challenges does the Mexican oil and gas industry face and how can América En Triunfo help?

A: América En Triunfo is partnered with COMET-PTC Group, an Italian firm that has purchased several factories globally in the past few years, including one, recently, in Brazil. It sells high- pressure water-cleaning equipment, offering 1,500 pounds per square inch (PSI) to 440,00 PSI of pressure. Our equipment has many applications in the oil and gas industry, depending on the area. In E&P, for example, our machines are used for cleaning production wells and for injecting different chemicals into them. In the area of refining and petrochemicals our technology is used to clean tubing, heat exchangers and reactors.

América En Triunfo’s partnership with COMET allows us to offer more than our core product of high-pressure water cleaning systems. We offer our clients integrated solutions for their applications. Specifically, we provide robotic and automated equipment that contributes to an 80 percent reduction in work time and guarantees 100 percent work safety. Also, the water used in our technologies is recyclable. Additionally, we provide the Mexican oil and gas industry with Blastrac solutions for surface preparation, anti-corrosion treatment, robotic coatings systems and safety equipment, such as fire extinguishing products for refineries. The latter is an extremely advanced technology designed specifically to extinguishing fires caused by hydrocarbons. Our objective is to automate these processes so that no operator is needed. Through remote control systems we can practically eliminate all the risks involved in these safety processes.

Q: In what other ways can your automated products benefit a company?

A: América En Triunfo is part of a global group of companies, called WaterJet Technology Association (WJTA), that offers high-pressure cleaning systems. The association regulates all the safety measures regarding high-pressure water cleaning systems. It includes training for all operators and producers of waterjet equipment to ensure it is used in the safest way. High-pressure systems are useful tools but they can also be dangerous. For this reason, correct training on their use is essential to ensure operators have the sufficient knowledge to take advantage of the equipment with the least possible risk. We are all certified and fully prepared to offer this course to our users. América En Triunfo does not only sell high-pressure systems, we also install them, train the operator and offer continuous maintenance support.

Q: How does América En Triunfo confront the talent gap in the Mexican oil and gas industry?

A: This is an issue that has been raised with us principally by PEMEX’s technicians and engineers. The problem is that experienced workers are already retiring, leaving a gap between them and younger engineers. América En Triunfo has helped to close this talent gap because our products require fewer personnel to operate and we fully train all users. Before, cleaning a heat exchanger may have required 20 people but now we offer solutions that require only four operators.

The talent gap is worsened by the fact that a lot of information in PEMEX has been lost over the years due to the manual way they used to work. Technological solutions will help protect data because information will be stored securely to be passed on to the next generation of workers.

Q: Where does América En Triunfo expect to see the most growth in the oil and gas sector?

A: Historically, América En Triunfo has had the most success in refining but the processes involved are going to change in the near future. Instead, we expect to see more growth in storage and distribution. Maintenance work will be needed on the existing refineries in Mexico so they can continue working. Exploration and production will also play a big part in the future of Mexico’s oil and gas industry and we see a lot of important opportunities for our products in E&P. Due to the difficult processes involved in entering the Mexican E&P market in the past, we could not fully exploit the opportunities for our products in this area. With private companies entering the market we believe it will be easier to introduce our products to the E&P sector.

Q: What will América En Triunfo look like in five years in an 215 ideal world?

A: Our five-year plan is to be the number one supplier of surface preparation technologies and heat exchanger maintenance services to the oil and gas industry. We want to be the number one provider of high-pressure cleaning systems to PEMEX and new private companies in Mexico. The market is cyclical. Around seven years ago the industry was in crisis and it was difficult to sell our products and services but this all changed. Our competitive advantage is that our products can be offered to different industries spanning automotive, mining and construction.