Al Manaratain Co. is a believer in Ammann concrete-mixing plants. The Bahrain-based company purchased two Elba plants in the 1980s and the facilities continue to run efficiently.
When demand called for a new concrete batching plant, Al Manaratain turned to the Ammann Elba CBS 130. The new plant was needed to serve the customer base of Al Manaratain; the company has been a manufacturer of quality concrete products for generations.
After the deal was made and the plant delivered, the global coronavirus pandemic struck.
“The installation of the concrete plant took place before the travel restrictions due to COVID-19,” said Rami Shihab, Area After Sales & Product Support Manager for Ammann. “A great deal of the mechanical and electrical work was completed, too. But some was pending before we had to return the Ammann engineers to their home base in Dubai.”
Eventually it was safe enough for Al Manaratain employees to get back to work, but the Ammann technicians who normally visit a plant site at this juncture were not allowed to travel. The installation still needed to be completed, as did the commissioning, testing and training.
Staff members at Al Manaratain, meanwhile, had to start up the plant to keep promises to customers. “They could not wait due to obligations, so we had to come up with a solution,” Shihab said.
The plan was to dedicate an Ammann engineer for daily, detailed video conferencing to walk Al Manaratain team members through the remainder of the installation. While the strategy had its challenges, there was one key advantage: the as1 Control System.
“We used the as1’s remote access to perform the commissioning and start the production,” Shihab said. The remote access enabled the engineers to take over the controls and work as if they were at the plant. They ran the control system from Dubai as if they present in Bahrain.
“The commissioning was successful and the plant has been working since,” Shihab said. Two training sessions have been completed through as1 remote support as well.
It was the first time a commissioning was completed without an Ammann engineer in attendance to personally oversee the process. “It was not easy, but it was manageable because the right plan was made and our team has great experience,” Shihab said. “The remote access of the as1 system played a big role in making the procedure doable.”
While it would have normally taken a week with an Ammann engineer on-site, the remote commissioning took a bit longer – about two weeks – but it was a much more expedient option than waiting out the pandemic.
The commissioning was an innovative approach to an unforeseen issue. Providing these kinds of solutions is what both Ammann and Al Manaratain are known for.
“Al Manaratain has been a manufacturer of the finest concrete products for generations and is a major market shareholder in the Kingdom of Bahrain,” said Mr. Sajith of Al Manaratain Co. “As a family-owned and operated business for the last 61 years, it has been our goal to innovate and improve our industry in order to provide a superior product that sets us apart.”