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FUPRE To Unveil First Indigenous Refinery Soon

Federal University of Petroleum Resources, Effurun (FUPRE), Delta State, will soon unveil its 20,000 capacity indigenous refinery it built with locally sourced materials.

The Vice-Chancellor of FUPRE, Prof. Akpofure Rim-Rukeh, who disclosed this in Warri at the weekend, said he was optimistic the refinery would be completed soon, adding that inadequate funding had hindered the project, which was conceived in 2018.

Speaking on the project, the vice-chancellor, who also marked his one-year in office, said work on the refinery was ongoing and that the boiler units had been completed, while work was ongoing on the atmospheric and vacuum distillation units.

“The refinery is 100 per cent indigenous, which means that the design and everything that goes into it is 100 per cent fabricated in the university. FUPRE will not purchase any parts from anywhere.

“Its design and the boiler unit have been completed. The next stage is the construction of the atmospheric distillation and vacuum distillation units,” he said.

Rim-Rukeh, who presented his performance scorecard to journalists, said the university had made great strides in its academic programmes, ICT and infrastructure development, provision of resource materials, healthcare and improved relationship with host communities, among others.

“As an innovative and research-intensive university, we are aggressively pursuing socially impactful research activities with utility value and practical application. To this end, the university had developed a policy on research and direction.

“It is in acknowledging the university’s prowess in research and innovation that the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND), pursuant to President Muhammadu Buhari’s directive to focus on the development of centre of excellence in the nation’s university system that we are about to establish centre for climate change, water and renewable energy research centres,” he stated.

Rim-Rukeh also disclosed that the university recently won an N40m research grant from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to manufacture MedLink, an innovative remote medical device and verbally programmable interactive remote patient monitoring device that physicians could use to monitor patients outside hospitals.

“The device measures blood pressure, blood glucose, pulse, heart rate, blood oxygen saturation, electrocardiography, body temperature and respiratory data.

“Despite the successes, FUPRE was facing challenges in infrastructural deficit, non-release of takeoff grant by the Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF), non-implementation of the FUPRE Act and inadequate funding,” he said.