Tüpraş Ventures, the venture capital company of Tüpraş, is taking innovative steps to support Tüpraş’s sustainable refining business area with a focus on safety and operational excellence. In this context, Tüpraş Ventures has invested in the startup AISField, which operates in the field of robotic technologies. This investment aims to expand the innovative robotic product portfolio in the digitalization field and contribute to promoting products and services to domestic and international customers and investors.
One of AISField’s robotic solutions, an ATEX-certified robot capable of performing tank bottom maintenance even when the tank is filled, has been deployed in Tüpraş refinery facilities.
As part of Tüpraş’s Strategic Transformation Plan in the sustainable refining sector, the company continues to implement digitalization and robotic applications. Tüpraş Ventures, the venture capital arm of Tüpraş, supports the parent company Tüpraş with technologies that accelerate digital transformation in the energy sector.
Tüpraş Ventures supports promising startups with the aim of forming strategic partnerships in the energy sector and promoting digitalization. Their first investment in the field of robotic technologies was carried out with the Ankara-based startup company AISField, which specializes in robotic inspection and data management.
Tüpraş Ventures, by investing in the expansion of Tüpraş’s innovative robotic product portfolio, will continue to focus on partnerships and investments in this field in the future.
AISField specializes in robotic technologies, automation, and advanced software solutions in the field of non-destructive testing. The company provides non-destructive testing solutions and systems in various industrial sectors, including energy production facilities, storage facilities, oil, fuels, natural gas, defense, and others, using its developed robotic technologies and software.
In the refining sector, tank bottom inspections can be performed even when the tanks are filled.
The RUVI OilDiver robot developed as part of the TÜBİTAK Order-Based R&D Projects for SME Support Program, in which Tüpraş participates as a customer organization, performs bottom inspections and maintenance of fuel tanks while they are filled.
The RUVI Diver underwater drone can perform visual and ultrasonic inspections of water tanks in industrial facilities, including refineries and fuel storage facilities. The I-Cleaner robot successfully handles tank cleaning operations in case of contamination in water tanks.
The robot, which ensures high safety in the working environment and achieves a 95% time savings, is also one of the few applications in the world with an international ATEX certificate established under the European Union framework, primarily aimed at protecting human health and safety.
The RUVI OilDiver robot, which has been implemented in Tüpraş facilities, contributes to time and cost savings since it can inspect tanks without taking them out of operation. Moreover, it enhances occupational health and safety by eliminating the need for employees to enter the tank, as is required in traditional methods. Additionally, the absence of hydrocarbon cleaning in traditional methods eliminates waste generation and disposal, thus preserving environmental conditions. The product has undergone successful field tests and initial services at Tüpraş facilities.
Levent Zağra, Deputy General Manager responsible for Innovation, Investments, and Planning at Tüpraş, stated, “At Tüpraş, our primary goal is to create a safe working environment for our colleagues by making the most of technologies that support our safety approach. In this regard, we carry out dangerous and challenging inspection and maintenance work in our refineries more safely, quickly, and in more detail through robotic technologies.”
Zağra also emphasized the advantages of the Tüpraş OilDiver project, stating that it eliminates the need for evacuation and cleaning stages, providing significant advantages in terms of inspection time and cost. He added, “This technology allows inspection of filled tanks without the need for personnel in enclosed spaces. It is of great importance due to its ability to minimize environmental and human health risks. We also believe that the collaboration and investment will serve as an important example for the entrepreneurship ecosystem. Starting as a venture-corporate collaboration project, we will have the opportunity to closely monitor developments in the field of robotics while improving our operational processes and supporting our strategic transformation goals.”
Established at the end of 2022, Tüpraş Ventures has initiated investments in technology startups in various areas, including sustainable refining, biofuels, zero-carbon electricity, green hydrogen, carbon management, smart information technologies, Industry 4.0, energy efficiency, environment, recycling, and waste management, in line with Tüpraş’s strategic plan. Tüpraş Ventures focuses on investing in domestic and international technology startups in its priority areas, with a particular emphasis on North America and Europe. While offering technology startups opportunities to test and scale their technologies, Tüpraş Ventures also shares its industry experience and knowledge. You can find more information about Tüpraş Ventures on their website: www.tuprasventures.com and about AISField on their website: https://www.aisfield.com/about.