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P&P Brochure

Pumps & Pipes is an association of Medical, Energy, Aerospace, Academic and Community professionals and leaders. Founded in 2007, our core essentials are Education, Communication and Collaboration. Its guiding principle to problem solving is exploring “The Other Guy’s Toolkit”.
Pumps & Pipes Mission:

  • Provide a platform to bring together professional groups who may not otherwise have the opportunity to interact for the transfer of knowledge and technology knowhow.
  • Be the leader in promoting cross-industry collaboration to solve challenging Pumps & Pipes problems.
  • Help strengthen the educational offerings in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

Pumps & Pipes Facts!

P&P Statistics

P&P Video Streams


Countries Participating


Attendees Since Launch


States Participating

Our Primary Focus Areas




Participants by Industry

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Pumps & Pipes Directors



Professor & Chairman, Department of Cardiovascular Surgery
Medical Director, DeBakey Heart & Vascular Center Houston Methodist Hospital



Manager, Drilling & Subsurface
ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company.



Director Johnson Space Center NASA



Eckhard Pfeiffer Professor
Department of Computer Science
Founder & Director Computational Biomedicine Lab
University of Houston



Vice President, Chief Engineer
Baker Hughes

Executive Director


Director Entrepreneurial Institute
DeBakey Heart & Vascular Center Houston Methodist Hospital

Associate Director


President, Tidal Ark Technologies
President, LASEAS, LLC

Associate Director


Founder & President, ReMinD Technologies

Pumps & Pipes Advisory Board

Denis DeBakey

Principal, deBakey Financial resources & Co-President, HCHd Foundation


David Horsup

Vice President, Research & Development, Nalco Champion


William Cohen

Director, Minimally Invasive Surgical Technology, Texas Heart Institute


Scott Parazinski

Astronaut, University Explorer & Professor of Practice, Arizona State University


Jane Grande-Allen

Professor & Associate Chair, External Partnerships, Department of Bioengineering, Rice University


Frank Perez

Chairman & CEO, Sfile Technology Corporation
Advisory Board Member, HMDH&VC


Matthew Franchek

Professor & Director, Subsea Engineering Program, University of Houston


Michael Hess

Associate Director of Engineering, NASA Johnson Space Center


Bob Mitchell

President, Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership


News & Events - A P&P Timeline

“One’s mind, once stretched by a new idea,
never regains its original dimensions.”
Oliver Wendell Holmes, M.D.

  • Celebrating the 10th year of Pumps & Pipes, the day-long conference that brought hundreds of professionals in the energy, medicine and aerospace industries to ExxonMobil’s innovative campus in Spring and thousands that joined via the webcast. This year’s theme was “Matching Minds.” Prior to the conference, attendees answered a list of questions from “What are you innovating?” to “What is your favorite movie?” Jacobs Technologies took all of the responses, put them in a giant algorithm and spit out table assignments that linked like-minded attendees—kind of like eHarmony for networking. Pumps & Pipes continued to show that participating industries can utilize “tricks of the trade” from each other to solve problems on a small scale—from the intricacies of pediatric heart surgery, to unclogging a giant oil pipeline, to keeping tubes clear on the International Space Station. All of the presenters made the point that innovative technology is the key to uniting and solving all of these problems. A highlight of the conference was Larry DeLucas, O.D., Ph.D, professor in the School of Optometry and director of the Center for Structural Biology and Center for Biophysical Sciences and Engineering at The University of Alabama at Birmingham. He literally took his interest in protein crystallography out of this world as a payload specialist on the United States Microgravity Laboratory-1 flight, Mission STS-50, in June 1992. A fan favorite was James Tour, Ph.D., professor of chemistry, materials sciences, nano-engineering and computer science at Rice University, who has been able to find myriad uses for graphene—sheets of bonded carbon atoms. Conference attendees learned that carbon can be grown on just about any carbon life form, even the leg of a cockroach. As Pumps & Pipes moves into its next decade, Lumsden told the audience to look out for changes, including fundraising to launch projects that grow out of the collaboration of the three industries.

    P&P 10 Program
  • On Dec. 7 2015, professionals from all three uniquely Houston industries gathered at the Houston Methodist Research Institute for the 9th annual Pumps & Pipes conference. What’s the difference between Pumps & Pipes and other technical conferences? - the difference is that we start with great things and learn from people who have done great things and pass it on. Passing on those insights has become a major focus of Pumps & Pipes. Chronicling a series of landmark achievements unveiled throughout the conference—from the first-ever autonomous navigation of a robotic catheter to the announcement of Euro Pumps & Pipes, a collaboration with Norway and continuously emphasized different ways of bringing STEM education into the classroom. To conclude the daylong event—which featured a live transcatheter aortic valve replacement, a keynote address by John B. Simpson, M.D., Ph.D., who helped catalyze the field of interventional cardiology and a networking session complete with 3D virtual reality imaging—a reception was held at Treviso Restaurant, co-hosted by the Texas Medical Center. While TMCx startup companies demonstrated their technology, a special presentation highlighted the Texas Medical Center’s vision for the future.

    P&P 9 Program
  • The P&P8 audience learned about a new NASA lander mission to study the geology of Mars, watched live as a transcatheter heart valve was implanted, and heard about the underground network of intelligent well completion. They saw the R2 Robonaut perform endoscopic surgery, heard about the spacewalk that was cut short by a water leak in the astronauts helmet, and watched live as an EVA space suit was X-rayed with state-of-art 3D image reconstruction. The P&P Roving Reporter returned with more interviews and exhibits to see on the webcast. Forty STEM students from eight schools attended the conference including the Robotics Club from Lamar High School, the DiscoBots. The P&P Reception was co-hosted by The Texas Medical Center and featured a presentation on ‘The Music of Pumps & Pipes’ (from pipe organs to heart assist devices). With over 260 registrants attending the ‘Sold Out’ conference in person and over 2700 webcast participants (+203%) from 29 States (+53%) and 33 countries (+32%), P&P8 was the most successful event to date.

    P&P 8 Program
  • Participants were immersed in an experience of Explorations from inner space to outer space with stops in between. The Keynote presentation highlighted the many advances in transcatheter cardiovascular therapeutics. The P&P Roving Reporter became part of the live webcast for the first time. The Roving Reporter conducted interviews and visited the many networking stations and exhibits including NASA’s Driven to Explore multi-media exhibit with a moon rock, and Halliburton’s ‘Nerves of the Oil Field’ display. P&P Remotes included a live feed from the Mayo Clinic Center for Regenerative Medicine where researchers demonstrated a 3D bio-printer for heart valves, to the Sarver Heart Center at University of Arizona to see the latest in implantable stretchy electronics. Presentation of the Dai-Shan Wong Memorial Service Award from the Gulf Coast Medical Device Manufacturers Association was added to the program for the first time. Eight students from two HISD STEM schools attended the conference. Once again, on-site attendance at P&P7 was ‘Sold Out’ with the live webcast audience increasing to an estimated 900 viewers (+174%) from 19 States and 25 countries (+32%).

    P&P 7 Program
  • On July 29, 2013, the first Pumps & Pipes Satellite Conference was hosted by the Johnson Space Center at the Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory (NBL) with 234 people attending the event. Dr. Ellen Ochoa, astronaut and Director, JSC was introduced as a new P&P Director. Members of the newly formed P&P Advisory Board were also introduced to the audience. Highlights included a tour of the NBL astronaut training pool, hands-on displays of advanced NASA technologies, and cross-industry networking.

    P&P JSC Program
  • NASA Johnson Space Center joined the Pumps & Pipes Program for the first time with a number of speakers and stunning exhibits including the Lunar Rover. A Steerable Drilling System from Schlumberger and Artificial Heart Devices from MDH&VC were also featured. P&P Remotes were shown for the first time including live feeds from Palmer Station, Antarctica and from a Subsea ROV in the Gulf of Mexico. Presentations ranged from capturing an Asteroid, to oil pipeline infection, to transcatheter heart valves. STEM students were invited to P&P for the first time. The Principal and four students from DeBakey High School attended the Symposium. Attendance soared to 243 on-site participants (+18%) and 329 webcast viewers (+167%) from 19 countries (+36%).

    P&P 6 Program
  • Research topics included, microbial induced corrosion of oil pipe and biofilm imaging, wellbore tractors, nanotechnology, fetal surgery in the womb, shape memory polymers and the beginning of cardiovascular pumps & pipes surgery. Results were presented about a collaborative Pumps & Pipes Project between ExxonMobil Upstream Research and MHH&VC to visualize flow patterns in a model well bore with gravel pack using MR imaging techniques. For the first time, a P&P Webcast was broadcast live. A total of 123 webcast viewers registered from 14 countries. Attendance at P&P5 Symposium increased by14% from P&P4.

    P&P 5 Program
  • On April 28, 2011, the first Pumps & Pipes International Conference was held in the grand ballroom of the Four Seasons Hotel in Doha, Qatar. The event, organized by the Qatar Science & Technology Park, ExxonMobil and MDH&VC, brought together more than 160 international experts in the fields of medicine and energy. Sponsoring institutions included the Hamad Medical Center, Imperial College London, and Qatar Robotic Surgery Centre. A highlight of the Symposium was the Live Heart Surgery Case from Houston Methodist Hospital, 8 time zones (8,054 miles) away.

    P&P Intl. Program
  • The Annual Symposium moved to The Methodist Hospital Research Institute and held in its 235-seat auditorium. Results were presented about the first collaborative Pumps & Pipes Project between MDH&VC and ExxonMobil Upstream Research to develop a ‘Heartbeat Simulator System’ for the advanced testing and multi-modality imaging of cardiovascular devices. A Live Heart Surgery Case from Houston Methodist Hospital was shown at P&P for the first time. Attendance at P&P4 increased by14% from P&P3.

    P&P 4 Program
  • The Symposium focused on state-of-the-art presentations, panel discussions outlining Pumps & Pipes problem areas, and networking. The invited speakers and audience consisted of scientists, engineers, and clinicians involved in cardiovascular medicine, researchers and managers from the oil & gas industry, scientists and engineers from academia, medical device R&D specialists, and venture capitalists. Stephen Igo, Director of the Entrepreneurial Institute at Methodist DeBakey Heart & Vascular Center, was Executive Director of the conference. Attendance at P&P3 increased 10% from P&P2.

    P&P 3 Program
  • Action Learning Project Report, researched and written by the Jones Graduate School of Management, Rice University, evaluated the Pumps & Pipes Program and made recommendations for continued growth. The report, titled Paving the Path from Oilfield to Operating Room, was published on May 6, 2009.

  • For the first time, the P&P Directors proposed the principal of exploring The Other Guy’s Toolkit for finding collaborative solutions to problems. The Symposium focused on showcasing technologies with possible cross-industry applications. The conference agenda concentrated on robotics and imaging technologies being used inside a well bore or a blood vessel. Attendance at P&P2 increased 11% from P&P1 to 144 participants.

    P&P 2 Program
  • On November 12, 2007 the first Pumps & Pipes Symposium was held at the University of Houston's Texas Learning and Computation Center. Dr. Ioannis Kakadiaris the Eckhard Pfeiffer Professor at University of Houston was a Co-Director. The goal of the meeting was to explore opportunities to develop cross-industry leapfrog technologies, to expose medical researchers, clinicians, and oil & gas engineers to emerging P&P innovations in their respective fields and specialties.

    P&P 1 Program
  • On a flight black to Houston, Dr. Alan Lumsden, a cardiovascular surgeon at Houston Methodist Hospital, and the passenger next to him, an ExxonMobil drilling engineer, struck up a conversation about their respective professions. By the time they landed, it was clear that both worked in pumps & pipes professions. The conversation continued with Dr. Bill Kline from ExxonMobil Upstream Research and the Pumps & Pipes Program was formed under their leadership.

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