Petroleum Ministry and Tehran University have signed a memorandum of understanding consisting of 15 articles, under its terms the Petroleum Museums And Documents Center and Tehran University will cooperate on scientific and artistic issues as well as conducting research.
This memorandum of understanding signed by the chancellor of Tehran University, Mahmoud Nili Ahmadabadi, on the one hand, and deputy minister of petroleum for engineering, research, and technology, Habibollah Bitaraf, on the other hand.
Under the memorandum of understanding terms, the two sides cooperation will be focused mainly on applicable studies and plans, publishing books, both written and translated, holding training and research meetings on the national and international levels, supporting university thesis, and holding artistic and designing workshops at postgraduate studies level.
Under the terms of MOU, Tehran University will do research and studies on projects that Petroleum Museums And Documents Center needs after approval by the related authorities and providing finances.
Paving the way for visiting the scientific centers and laboratories are among the other fields the two sides will cooperate on.
The link between university and industry
The goal of signing ceremony was to become familiar with the modern industrial culture which is known across the world as industrial heritage and newly has been welcomed by academic centers in the country especially Tehran University.
The topic of industrial heritage is so important that before holding the signing ceremony the Conservation Of Historic Building Department at the Architecture Faculty of Tehran University decided to hold a one-day seminar on the adaptability of oil refineries with petroleum museums and invited the students and lecturers of the university as well as petroleum museums officials to attend it. During the seminar, the speakers raised issues which excerpts of them follow below.
But before that lets to talk briefly about the concept of industrial heritage.
Industrial Heritage Definition
“Industrial heritage refers to the physical remains of the history of technology and industry, such as manufacturing and mining sites, as well as power and transportation infrastructure.”
In more simple words, industrial heritage includes remains of the industrial materials like places, buildings, plants, machinery and equipment.
Industrial heritage also refers to houses, industrial complexes, industrial landscapes, products and technologies of the industrial community. Preservation of this heritage by deploying scientific and specialized procedures of the contemporary era has a very high importance for research centers of today.
These efforts include founding the International Committee for the Conservation of the Industrial Heritage (TICCIH) which its activities are mainly archeology and maintaining and preserving industrial heritage.
Iran joined the committee in 2012 and head of Conservation Of Historical Buildings at Architecture Faculty of Tehran University, Pirouz Hanachi, represents Iran at the committee.
Petroleum Ministry Believes In Tehran University Potentials
Habibollah Bitaraf, deputy minister of petroleum for engineering, research, and technology, who signed the memorandum of understanding on behalf of the Petroleum Ministry told the seminar that the ministry believes in scientific, technological, and research capabilities of Iranian universities and especially Tehran university and plans to take advantage of these potentials.
He continued: in both upstream and downstream sectors, reservoir engineering, petrochemicals, refining and natural gas, we have been able to get good results during cooperation with universities.
“The achievements I mention are not just rhetoric, but they are very real. this cooperation in the fields of research and transfer of technology has made huge signs of progress of which enhancing recovery and creating institutes and specialized centers are clear examples”, Bitaraf told the audiences.
According to him, oil industry tries hard to improve its functions by reliance on domestic potentials and leave behind long-lasting effects. The petroleum ministry is the leading force of these activities and the MOU we are going to sign today intends to create a framework for continuing these cooperations.
Director Of Petroleum Museums Remarks
The director of Petroleum Museums And Documents Center who arranged the meeting and laid the foundation for signing the memorandum of understanding, during his remarks in the seminar, underlined the necessity of boosting interaction between universities and oil industry. He noted that during the previous meetings with the architecture faculty officials, it was decided that the bilateral cooperation should be more organized.
He noted: the oil industry took a long step to create a petroleum museum during the reign of reformists (1997-2005) but it did not realize until 2013, when Bijan Zanganeh, once again came back as petroleum minister and creating petroleum museums became a priority. One year later, in 2014, the minister tasked me to carry out the plan.
Nematollahi said: under the preliminary plan, we decided to create three petroleum museums in Abadan, Masjid-solyman and Tehran, depending on the background of oil industry activities in each city and that is why oil production, its discovery and developing the related primary technologies are the main priorities in founding the Masjed-solyman petroleum museum, while in Abadan petroleum museum, refining and crude oil exports are the main themes and in Tehran, the petroleum museum is mainly focused on science and technology.
“For the launching of each museum, we consulted with very potential consultants in the field, studied kicked off and based on the researches the Petroleum Museums And Documents Center did, at first it was decided that Abadan and Masjid-solyman to become city-museums as a result of their close link with oil industry and the existence of old oil facilities everywhere in both cities. But later it was decided that five important points in each city to be chosen for setting up petroleum museums and the idea was finalized for implementation;” director of Petroleum Museums And Documents Center said.
He further noted: 22 other historical spots have been chosen for creating petroleum museums across the country with related studies going on, he told the seminar, adding up to now two petroleum museums including Abadan gas station museum (southwest of Iran) and Sabzevar gas station museum (northeast of Iran) have been launched while three others will be inaugurated before the end of current Iranian calendar year on 20th March 2019. These are Abadan Apprentice Museum, Kerman Petroleum Museum (east of the country) and Darwazeh-Dowlat Gas Station Museum in the capital.
“Petroleum museums management also has succeeded in registering 124 historical spots across the country as national heritage and there are other historical points that their registration as national heritage is going on at the Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization,” according to the director of Petroleum Museums.
At the end of his remarks, Mr. Nematollahi said that identification and collecting old and historical oil industry objects across the country had been one of the main activities of the Petroleum Museums And Documents Centre.
“Petroleum Museums And Documents Centre has been able to collect more than 25 million documents, some of them belong to years before the discovery of oil in Iran, nearly 127 years ago, and a number of valuable hand-drawn maps. We have started a big project and we ask the universities to support us to complete the national duty successfully,” he concluded.
Threat or opportunity
Pirouz Hanachi, head of the Conservation Of Historic Buildings Department at the Architecture Faculty of Tehran University pointed out the place of industrial heritage in the modern era and its importance in preserving old and historical industries across the globe and said: industrial heritage has created great developments all over the world.
He went on to say that following industrial revolution, urban development and the problems were raised as a result of industrial development in cities, some industries were abandoned in the cities. Even though this trend at first seemed to be a threat but afterward it was changed into an opportunity, and this was when it was decided these industries to be changed into historical and cultural heritage. This was the beginning of a new era and for the first time, a power plant and an oil port turned into museums in England and Belgium respectively.
According to him, the first global conference in the field of industrial heritage was held in Ironbridge, England, followed by founding a global organization called TICCIH and Professor Martin, a lecturer at the University of Michigan assumed its presidency.
“we joined the organization and in 2003 a document drafted in Russian under its terms industrial works were considered as valuable and their conservation became a necessity across the globe.” Pirouz Hanachi said.
He noted: the industrial heritage includes industries like agriculture, communications, energy, oil, power, glass, iron, leather, steel, maritime transportation, mechanic, metallurgy, mining, paper, textile, tourism, water and so on; adding Petroleum Ministry is deserved appreciation because it is forerunner in the field of industrial heritage in the country.
“now that we are signing this MOU, our hope is that we can hold TICCIT meetings in Iran as well”, he concluded.
Museums belong to the future as well
Mahmoud Nili Ahmadabadi, the chancellor of Tehran University, was the other key speaker at the seminar, who thanked Petroleum Ministry’s approach for close cooperation with universities, noting during the years [that Khatami was president from 1997 to 2005] and Bijan Namdar Zanganeh and Hibibollah Bitaraf were serving as the minister of petroleum and minister of energy respectively, we witnessed the best academic achievements.
He said: We were innovative in boosting cooperation between the universities and industry, we created new patterns and expanded them, the patterns which are prevalent now everywhere in the country. These patterns boosted cooperation between industry and universities and removed the barriers separating them from each other.