Memory Lane

Memory Lane: Building up in RT, a lunar eclipse, Aramcon goes online for MBA

In the early days of the internet, Aramcon Hasan M. Al-Taha was among the first to study online for his master’s degree.

Memory Lane: Building up in RT, a lunar eclipse, Aramcon goes online for MBA

A quick look back at some of the headlines that defined their times in The Arabian Sun and The Sun and Flare.

Oct. 26, 1955


The new $13 million fluid hydroformer at Ras Tanura went into full operation last week after more than two years of work, on-site construction, and testing. Designed to furnish high-octane gasoline for sale in world markets, the hydroformer will charge 12,500 barrels a day of heavy naptha and produce 9,000 barrels a day of 88 research octane number gasoline.


The high test product from the unit will be blended with other refinery gasoline streams of lower octane to give a finished gasoline a high-octane rating. Octane rating of a gasoline indicates its ability to prevent pre-ignition and pinging in an auto engine.


A rapid increase in automobile engine compression ratios throughout the world has brought a corresponding increase in gasoline octane number. Premium grade United States gasolines now average about 95 octane numbers while regular grades are around 90 octane.

Nov. 3, 1965


The high-rate crude blend of at Ras Tanura is in the final stages of construction, with all piping installed and valve and electrical work in process.


Next week, crude oil will be run through the blender in a 10-day testing and tryout period while final adjustments are made. By mid-November, the blender will start up with liquid petroleum gas introduced into the crude oil streams. After this test procedure is completed, the unit will be turned over to Operations.


Existing facilities blend crude at the rate of 30,000 barrels per hour. The new blender will handle a 60,000 barrel per hour blend.


Oct. 29, 1975


Aramco’s light vehicle fleet, which has been expanded by more than 100% over the past five years, is expected to be increased by approximately 26% during this year, according to the latest projection figures of the Land Transportation Department.


Thus, by the end of the year, the department anticipates a fleet of 2,846 light vehicles, including sedans, pick-up trucks, light carry-alls, and small buses, compared to the 2,276 listed in 1974.


A constant delivery of the light vehicles is made during each year. During the first eight months of 1975, an average of 82 vehicles per month were brought to the Aramco yards.


Oct. 30, 1985


This striking visual record of the total lunar eclipse that occurred Monday evening was created by photographer Abdullah Dubais of the Aramco Photograph Unit who used Plus X film and a Nikon F3 camera with 300 mm telephoto lens to produce these frames.


The exposure, which was dictated by the brightness of the moon, was 1/250th of a second at f/11. Viewed from the left, the photo shows the moon from just after the time it contacted the umbra through to near totality.

Nov. 8, 1995


On May 25, Hasan M. Al-Taha began attending classes in the University of Phoenix Master of Business Administration program using his computer and modem at home.


The university offers online classes as part of its professional education program, called Online Campus, based in San Francisco. Students sign in from around the world. Each class has eight to 12 students.


Before such online programs, “distance learning” or attending university courses without being physically on campus relied upon videotape conferencing, faxing, or correspondence programs. Now, with this state-of-the-art “virtual classroom,” students can earn an advanced degree by participating in daily classroom discussions, submitting assignments and taking final examinations without ever setting a foot on a university campus. To attend the online program, one only needs a computer, a modem, and word processing software.


Nov. 1, 2005


Two new appointees, one executive director and one general manager, have been named to permanent positions effective Nov. 1. They are Amin H. Nasser, now executive director of Petroleum Engineering and Development, and Khaled A. Al-Buraik, chief petroleum engineer.


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