In an effort to enhance the drive towards carbon neutrality in Saudi Arabia, Saudi Aramco has officially opened a new fibreglass production centre that will help reduce the use of steel rebar in its construction projects, Zawya reports.
The first fiberglass rebar facility in Saudi Arabia, IKK Mateenbar, will producein its 10,000 m2 facility non-metallic glass fiber-reinforced polymer (GFRP) rebars, a non-corrosive material alternative to steel offering twice the strength at a quarter of the weight.
It is expected that IKK Mateenbar, a joint venture between the Isam Khairy Kabbani (IKK) Group of Companies and the New Zealand company Pultron Composites, will reduce steel rebar consumption by approximately 50,000 tons per year.
The facility was established under a 2019 memorandum of understanding signed Pultron Composites, and its partner, Isam Khairy Kabbani Group (IKK), with Saudi Aramco.
Ahmad Al-Sa’adi, Saudi Aramco’s senior vice president of technical services, pointed during the inauguration ceremony that Aramco has been developing and using non-metallic solutions within its own operations for more than 20 years.
Stressing that the use of non-metallic, advanced polymer materials has significant potential in multiple sectors with GFRP rebar having potential to be the real game-changer for the building and construction sector with its ability to mitigate corrosion and minimize life cycle costs.
The IKK Mateenbar launch is part of the Kingdom’s efforts to attract and localize the rebar industry and in line with the Saudi Vision 2030’s objectives in terms of diversifying the national economy, promoting innovation and strengthening Kingdom’s international relations.