Chemical engineers, process safety professionals, and stakeholders across the chemical process industries (CPI) will survey the state of their profession when the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) and its Center for Chemical Process Safety (CCPS) host the 2022 AIChE Spring Meeting and 18th Global Congress on Process Safety (GCPS). After presenting its conferences virtually in 2020 and 2021, AIChE will conduct the 2022 Spring Meeting and GCPS in-person at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio, TX, April 10–14. Sessions will be recorded and made available online beginning the week of April 17.
AIChE’s largest meeting for practicing chemical engineering and allied professional, the Spring Meeting showcases the breadth of today’s chemical engineering endeavors, from the fundamentals to emerging developments, in a program incorporating more than 200 technical sessions. Areas of focus include chemical engineers at the forefront of new and sustainable methods of manufacturing and energy production, as well as process safety developments in the chemical, petrochemical, and related industries.
Setting the stage for the conference on Monday, April 11, is the AIChE Government and Industry Leaders (AGILE) Award Keynote lecture, to be presented by Lori Ryerkerk, Chairman, Chief Executive Officer, and President of Celanese Corp. In her talk, Ryerkerk will introduce the overall conference theme: “Transformation Beyond 2050: Sustainability and the Chemical Plant of the Future.”
This emphasis on the chemical engineering profession’s ongoing transformation comes into focus at the meeting’s topical conferences.
The role of chemical engineers as drivers of advanced manufacturing techniques will be examined in several topical conferences, highlighting “Industry 4.0” concepts such as process intensification, digitization, artificial intelligence, and big-data analytics. Sustainability is a factors in many topical conferences, including one that charts progress in industrial wastewater management and reuse.
Additional topical conferences include the 34th Ethylene Producers’ Conference, as well as tracks devoted to refinery processing, gas utilization, clean energy, hydrogen safety, waste plastics, upstream engineering and flow assurance, and equity in the workforce, among other topics.
Programming organized by AIChE’s Fuels and Petrochemicals Division will span topics from traditional fuel production to considerations of how the oil and gas industries can adapt to the changing landscape of net-zero, decarbonization, and other timely subjects. The energy-focused programming begins on April 11 at a plenary co-hosted with the Industry 4.0 topical conference. At the plenary, Brian Roth (McKinsey and Co.) will detail the role of artificial intelligence in the industry’s decarbonization efforts, and Peter Nowobilski (bp) will discuss the transition to net-zero refining.
Daily keynote luncheons delve further into the conference’s themes. On April 11, Jennifer Wilcox, Acting Assistant Secretary in the U.S. Dept. of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management, will discuss the role of carbon capture in meeting net-zero carbon goals. The luncheon on April 12 welcomes Erika Peterman, Senior Vice President of Chemical Intermediates for North America at BASF, who will discuss the importance of building a process safety culture. The April 13 luncheon features a talk by Gavin Towler, Vice President and Chief Technology Officer at Honeywell Performance Materials Technologies, who will discuss the energy transition.
Organized by AIChE’s Center for Chemical Process Safety (CCPS), the Global Congress on Process Safety engages safety engineers, plant managers, and process design experts worldwide in a continuing exploration of technologies and strategies to ensure plant safety, manage risk, and strengthen process safety management (PSM) programs. The Global Congress builds upon CCPS’s vision for “a world without process safety incidents.”
The GCPS beings on April 11 with a plenary keynote by Robert Johnston, Senior Vice President at ExxonMobil Chemical Co., who will discuss the importance of sharing and applying the knowledge gained after incident investigations.
The GCPS incorporates the programming of the 56th Annual Loss Prevention Symposium, the 37th CCPS International Conference, the 24th Process Plant Safety Symposium, and the 11th Process Safety Management Mentoring Forum. The international emphasis of the meeting is underscored by sessions offering “Perspectives on Process Safety from Around the Globe.” Sessions devoted to “Case Histories” (April 13) will providing insights on real-world incident investigations such as the 2020 Evergreen Packaging Paper Mill fire; the 1969 Rocky Flats fire; lessons learned from ammonia nitrate detonations in Beirut, Tianjin, and West Texas; and more.
For a complete schedule of events and information about conference registration, visit www.aiche.org/spring.
About AIChE: AIChE is a professional society of more than 60,000 members in more than 110 countries. Its members work in corporations, universities and government using their knowledge of chemical processes to develop safe and useful products for the benefit of society. Through its varied programs, AIChE continues to be a focal point for information exchange on the frontier of chemical engineering research in such areas as nanotechnology, sustainability, hydrogen fuels, biological and environmental engineering, and chemical plant safety and security. More information about AIChE is available at www.aiche.org.