Creating the protectors

The BEWI Universal Protector has been developed in close collaboration with EGGS Design.

EGGS Design is an independent innovation consultancy, which helps clients craft new products, services and business transformations. Since 2019 BEWI Energy and EGGS have worked on solving the following task:
 
Designing smart, flexible, recyclable plastic tubular protectors that can adapt to a variety of pipe dimensions and thread standards.
 
 
A continuous innovation process
 
BEWI Energy had already developed the idea for a universal protector to a defined concept, before collaborating with EGGS. When EGGS came aboard the task was to further develop this idea through innovation, development, and completion, which are key elements in industrial design and mechanical construction. 
 
– For us, design means every aspect of product development. A good design is a design that benefits the planet, is cost efficient to produce, ergonomic for the users and has a pleasing appearance. The people at BEWI Energy are design thinkers themselves. They have shown creativity, innovation, willpower, and appreciate “hands on” work, says Carl André Nørstebø, Creative Director on Industrial Design at EGGS.
 
The collaboration between EGGS and BEWI Energy has been a continuous innovation process. In their studio in Trondheim, 3D-printing prototypes has been done almost on a daily basis. 
 
– Our philosophy has been “print before thinking”. Sometimes you have to get physical before you can have a definite hypothesis, says Nørstebø.
The two key components
 
The design of The BEWI Universal Protector is based on some of the same protective mechanisms you see in cars or helmets. It has a hard plastic casing, and a softer material inside. 
 
The most challenging task to solve was to make a mechanism fit well on many different thread patterns. This challenge is solved with the soft plastic. It not only offers waterproofing and protects from unwanted substances leaking in, but it also provides a good grip around the pipe threads and absorbs possible shocks. The hard-plastic casing protects from external forces and has a deformation sone, which ensures that the pipes won’t get ruined if the protector is damaged.
 
-The product protects the pipes better, it can be reused and it fits many different pipe sizes, which simplifies the customers logistics, says Nørstebø.

Facts and features

The Bewi Universal Protector

  • The protectors are made of HDPE and TPV plastics.
  • Optimizes operations by reducing the time consumption of manual workloads by 75 – 80% (onshore and offshore).
  • Thread pattern independent. One protector will swallow any thread pattern in the various size columns of tubulars, reducing logistics challenges significantly.
  • Not more than 4 seconds to mount or remove.
  • Reusable (Under normal use; 5-10 times).
  • Recyclable.
  • Current Range limit: 5 1/2” to 13 3/8”.
  • Mounting does not require tools.
  • Reducing Stock keeping units by 80%.
  • By subscription the protectors can be returned to BEWI free of charge (less freight) after use.
  • Designed to support dope less and doped connections. 
Ergonomic and sustainable
 
The BEWI Universal Protector is equipped with ergonomic handles, and unlike conventional models requires no tools at all for mounting and removal. The time for mounting has been reduced from typically 20 seconds to 4 seconds.
 
– BEWI Energy came up with the idea to have handles on the protector, which make it much more ergonomic for the operators. You get a solid grip during mounting and removal, says Nørstebø.
 
In addition to many beneficial features, the design contributes to a sustainable development. Some protectors on the market today contain both plastic and steel. BEWI Universal Protectors are made solely of plastic, which facilitates recycling. This will result in a significant reduction of the CO2 footprint generated by the protectors.
 
– To be a part of making the switch from disposable to circular products is one of the most meaningful things you can do as a designer, says Nørstebø.
Prestigious design award
 
BEWI Energy, together with EGGS Design, have received the DOGA Award for Design and Architecture for the design of the BEWI Universal Protector.
 
The award is a distinction awarded by DOGA to Norwegian businesses and designers who demonstrate the outstanding use of design and architecture. The award is leading to its kind in Norway and showcases and spotlights exemplary projects of innovative and user-centred solutions. The jury focuses primarily on the process and collaboration between the commissioning party and design practitioner. 
 
BEWI Energy won the award with the following motivation from the DOGA Award’s jury (NB. The name of the protector has been changed after the award):
 
“Bewi Smart Protector is perhaps the opposite of flashy design, but it’s brilliant either way. It is cleverly designed and with solid execution. Everything indicates that this will be a commercial success in an oil and gas industry that is screaming for solutions that can reduce both climate impact and costs. Bewi Smart Protector is awarded the DOGA Award for design and architecture for dealing with a fairly invisible, but nevertheless significant, environmental issue. This is top notch innovative industrial design based on a solid business model. In other words, exactly what Norway needs.” 
 
Read the whole verdict here (in norwegian).