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Letters: March 2017

March
2017
Letters
Introverts Giving Back I am responding to your editorial in the November 2016 issue, “The Introverted Leader — An Oxymoron?” I appreciated your comments regarding the introverted leader. I, too, am an introvert. Because of that, it has taken me this...

New Products: March 2017

March
2017
New Products
Measurement Equipment Level Transmitters Provide Accurate Measurements in Challenging Applications The Model 2290 unguidedwave radar transmitters and Model 2291 guided-radar transmitters incorporate advanced radar-sensing technology designed for...

Ensure Product Quality through Risk-Based Scale Calibration

February
2017
Instrumentation
Simone Budinsky
Many manufacturing standards are not explicit about scale calibration and testing requirements. This article dispels some common myths about scale performance and explains how calibration and testing based on risk assessment support compliance and quality.

New Products: February 2017

February
2017
New Products
Environmental, Health, and Safety Respirator Lets You Focus on the Job Duraflow is a lightweight and ergonomic powered air respirator that incorporates real-time air-flow control technology. Assurance of respiratory protection means you can focus on...

Qatar’s Chemical Industry: Monetizing Natural Gas

February
2017
Global Outlook
Hassan E. Alfadala, Mahmoud M. El-Halwagi
With one of the world’s largest natural gas reserves and a vision to become the “Gas Capital of the World,” Qatar is monetizing its wealth of resources through the production of value-added chemicals and energy products.

Profile: Tackling the Challenges of Regulating Biotechnology

February
2017
Profile
“Policy issues are often divorced from science and technology, and I think that needs to change,” says Megan J. Palmer, Senior Research Scholar at the Center for International Security and Cooperation (CISAC) at Stanford Univ. CISAC brings together...

Use the Bow Tie Diagram to Help Reduce Process Safety Risks

December
2016
Safety
Bruce K. Vaughen, P.E., Kenneth Bloch
Bow tie diagrams are useful for visualizing process safety risks and safeguards. Although typically used after an incident has occurred, bow tie diagrams can also be employed during a process hazard analysis.

Books: February 2017

February
2017
Books
The Internet of Women: Accelerating Culture Change Nada Anid and Laurie Cantileno, Monique J. Morrow and Rahilla Zafar, Eds., Rivers Publishers, Gistrup, Denmark, $29.95, 350 pages, Sept. 2016, ISBN: 978-8-793-37968-8 Gender equality and female...

Technical Entity Trends: A Cure May Stem From Your Cells

February
2017
Technical Entity Trends
Gabriel Levesque-Tremblay
Before her first birthday, Layla Richards was diagnosed with an aggressive form of leukemia. After chemotherapy and a bone marrow transplant failed to cure her, she was treated in 2015 with engineered T-cells. The treatment eradicated all traces of...

Career Corner: Dealing with Difficult Coworkers

February
2017
Career Corner
Loraine Kasprzak
You spend more time with coworkers each week than you do with your family — especially if you work in an open-plan office. When you must interact with a colleague whose behaviors annoy you, your workday can quickly become stressful and unproductive...

Centrifugal Compressors in Ethylene Plants

February
2017
Back To Basics
Shane Harvey, P.Eng.
Centrifugal compressors are used in ethylene plants for cracked-gas compression and refrigeration services. This article describes the basic design and operation of these compressors.

Process Saety Beacon: Do Not Mix Incompatible Materials in Storage Tanks

February
2017
Process Safety Beacon
The incompatible chemicals sulfuric acid and sodium hypochlorite (bleach) were inadvertently mixed during a routine raw material delivery to a plant in Atchison, KS, on Oct. 21, 2016. The chemicals reacted, releasing a cloud of chlorine gas into the...

Data Science for Chemical Engineers

February
2017
On The Horizon
David Beck, Jim Pfaendtner, James Carothers, Venkat Subramanian
Chemical engineers need data science tools to take advantage of the increasing amount of data available to them. Data storage, analysis, and visualization will play more important roles in the discipline.

Editorial: Together Everyone Achieves More

February
2017
Editorial
Cynthia Mascone
This is an expanded version of the Editorial that appeared in the print version of Chemical Engineering Progress, February 2017. T ogether E veryone A chieves M ore One reason I love my job so much is the CEP editorial staff. Publishing CEP is truly...

INTERPHEX Expo Preview

February
2017
New Products
INTERPHEX is an annual event dedicated to showcasing pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical innovation, technology, and knowledge. It brings together over 12,000 global pharmaceutical and biotechnology professionals for exhibitions, education,...

2018 AIChE Annual Meeting

October 28 - November 2, 2018
The AIChE Annual Meeting is the premier educational forum for chemical engineers interested in innovation and professional growth. Academic and industry experts will cover wide range of topics relevant to cutting-edge research, new technologies, and emerging growth areas in chemical engineering.

Hydroprocessing for Clean Energy: Design, Operation, and Optimization

January, 2017
This book provides a holistic approach that looks at changing process conditions, possible process design changes, and process technology upgrades. It includes process integration techniques for improving process designs and for applying optimization techniques for improved operations, with a focus...

Process Safety Beacon: High Oxygen Concentrations Can Be Hazardous

January
2017
Process Safety Beacon
A fire in the Apollo 1 command module killed all three crew members during a launch rehearsal test on Jan. 27, 1967. The atmosphere of the command module was 100% oxygen at 16.7 psia (1.15 bar). Materials that are hard to ignite in air burn rapidly...

Editorial: Making RAPID Gains in Energy Efficiency

January
2017
Editorial
Cynthia Mascone
In a 2012 report, the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) examined energy-efficiency opportunities looking forward to 2050 and found that energy efficiency could reduce projected 2050 U.S. energy use by 40–60%. Achieving those...

New Products: January 2017

January
2017
New Products
Environmental, Health, and Safety Adsorbent Makes Use of Glass Waste The Green Glass Adsorbent Technology is made of recycled LCD-panel glass. This unique material adsorbs heavy metal ions from industrial wastewater, and then desorbs the ions so...

Use Downcomer Gamma Scans to Troubleshoot Your Process

January
2017
Reactions and Separations
Henry Z. Kister, Chuck Winfield
Downcomer scanning can provide valuable information to diagnose your tower. In particular, these scans are useful for determining the mechanism of flooding — one of the most common problems encountered in distillation columns. Follow these guidelines to avoid pitfalls.

Technical Entity Trends: Sustainability Careers for Chemical Engineers

January
2017
Technical Entity Trends
Lucy Lyudmila Alexander
The Brundtland Commission (formerly known as the World Commission on Environment and Development) coined the term sustainable development in a 1987 report, defining it as “development which meets the needs of current generations without compromising...

Don’t Do This!

January
2017
Safety
Glenn Young, Joel Olener
These are some of the worst process safety management (PSM) practices we have seen. Don’t make these mistakes.

YPOV: Choose the Right PhD Program

January
2017
YPOV
Emily Frangenberg
Applying to doctoral programs can seem like a daunting task. But doing your research and staying organized can help you earn an acceptance letter from a quality school.

Catalyzing Commercialization: Sour Gas Has a Sweeter Future

January
2017
Catalyzing Commercialization
Many distributed natural-gas-containing resources, which include natural gas, landfill gas, and biogas, contain significant amounts of sulfur (mainly as hydrogen sulfide). The sulfur content in these gases, which can range from several hundred parts per million to several percent, must be reduced to acceptable levels (e.g., 1 ppm for demanding catalytic processes and several hundred ppm for internal combustion engines or boilers) before these gases can be utilized.

Career Corner: Dealing with Difficult Bosses

December
2016
Career Corner
Loraine Kasprzak
In the comedy Horrible Bosses , three friends who have been harassed, insulted, and terrorized by their bosses scheme to get rid of them permanently. Professionals who may have had a difficult manager or two may readily identify with the trio and...

Look to the Future with Succession Planning

December
2016
Business
Don McDermott, Sandra Marshall
As experienced individuals retire or leave your organization, make sure business objectives can still be met by establishing a succession plan.

Catalyzing Commercialization: Converting Waste Heat into Electrical Power

December
2016
Catalyzing Commercialization
Waste heat is an enormous and largely untapped source of low-cost energy. More than half of the energy consumed in the world escapes into the atmosphere in the form of waste heat. With global energy demand projected to increase by nearly 50% by 2040...

Editorial: Solar Energy is Good for the Soul

December
2016
Editorial
Cynthia Mascone
This is an expanded version of the Editorial that appeared in the print version of Chemical Engineering Progress, December 2016. The December solstice is right around the corner — marking the beginning of winter in the Northern Hemisphere and...

Process Safety Beacon: Uncover Hidden Ignition Sources

December
2016
Process Safety Beacon
Some ignition sources are obvious. A glowing cigarette, an active oxyacetylene torch, and a cascade of sparks and burning metal from a grinder are hard to miss. Others ignition sources may be hidden, such as glowing particles from past hot work, hot...

New Products: December 2016

December
2016
New Products
Product Focus: Pumps Multistage Pump Reduces Carbon Dioxide Emissions The Xylem e-HM line of multistage pumps features modular construction and horizontal orientation that is suitable for industrial washing and refrigeration, food and beverage,...

AIChE Journal Highlight: Use these Tools to Ease into Active Learning

December
2016
Journal Highlight
Numerous studies have demonstrated that active learning in the classroom is a more effective teaching method than the traditional lecture; this is true even when only a fraction of class time is devoted to active learning. Studies also show that...

Profile: Pursuing Science for the Public Good

December
2016
Profile
For Siddhartha “Sid” Roy, watching the Flint water crisis unfold and listening to the stories of its residents has emphasized the role the public should play in engineering and public health. “If we as engineers have a public-focused mindset, we...

Books: December 2016

December
2016
Books
Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race Margot Lee Shetterly, William Morrow, New York, NY, $27.99, 368 pages, Sept. 2016, ISBN: 978-0-062-36359-6 During the labor...

Introduction to Electron-Beam Food Irradiation

November
2016
On The Horizon
Suresh D. Pillai
Nonthermal food processing technologies, such as X-ray and electron-beam irradiation, may be used to eliminate pathogens in raw foods, pasteurize delicate food products such as fresh produce, and perform phytosanitary treatment.

New Products: November 2016

November
2016
New Products
Product Focus: Valves Throttling Valve Provides Dependable Shutoff The Clampseal throttling valve is suitable for severe-service applications that require repeatable flow control and reliable shutoff. The seat and stem assembly can be easily changed...

Stop Knocking Your Condensate Return

November
2016
Back To Basics
James R. Risko
Condensate return systems can have a big impact on productivity, energy efficiency, and site reliability. Use this guide to better understand your condensate return, optimize its operation, and mitigate common pitfalls such as high backpressure and water hammer.

Patents: What Makes an Invention Nonobvious?

November
2016
Career Catalyst
M. Henry Heines
In addition to being novel, an invention must be nonobvious to qualify for a patent. Learn strategies that have and can be used to qualify your invention as nonobvious.

CEP: Editorial - Engaging in Public Affairs

February
2014
Editorial
Cynthia Mascone
Students in the engineering and public policy (EPP) department worked on projects at the intersection of technology and society, like energy, the environment, and risk analysis. Those sounded interesting, so I enrolled in the ChE/EPP double-major program. Electives on topics such as energy policy, organizational behavior, social analysis, and arms control and defense policy, and projects on product liability, diagnostic radiation, and coal mine safety, gave me an appreciation for the interdependence of engineering and the public welfare.

AIChE Journal Highlight: A High-Throughput Approach to Designing Materials

November
2016
Journal Highlight
In the November AIChE Journal Perspective article, “High-Throughput Methods Using Composition and Structure Spread Libraries,” John Kitchin and Andrew Gellman of Carnegie Mellon Univ. discuss a method to more efficiently map material properties across composition, structure, and environmental conditions.

Letters: November 2016

November
2016
Letters
Eliminating CO2 Emissions Re: “CCUS: Utilizing CO2 to Reduce Emissions,” by Marcius Extavour and Paul Bunje, June 2016, pp. 52–59: The article mentions eliminating CO2 emissions at their source by replacing CO2-producing processes, such as electric...

Spotlight On Safety: The Beacon: A Free Tool that Saves Lives

November
2016
Spotlight on Safety
Louisa Nara
If a free tool that improves process safety and saves lives were available, would you use it? The Center for Chemical Process Safety (CCPS) has been providing such a tool for the past 15 years. The Process Safety Beacon is a one-page monthly message...

Books: November 2013

November
2016
Books
The Wealth of Humans: Work, Power and Status in the Twenty-First Century Ryan Avent, St. Martin’s Press, New York, NY, $26.99, 288 pages, Sept. 2016, ISBN: 978-1-250-07580-2 We are in the midst of an industrial revolution. Digital technology is...

Process Safety Beacon: Fifteen Years of the Process Safety Beacon

November
2016
Process Safety Beacon
In November 2001, the Center for Chemical Process Safety (CCPS) published the first issue of the Process Safety Beacon and distributed it to a few hundred people. Since then, 180 issues for process industry workers have been published (available at...

Technical Entity Trends: Optimize Production through Metabolic Engineering

November
2016
Technical Entity Trends
Gabriel Levesque-Tremblay
Metabolic engineering is an emerging research field that focuses on optimizing genetic and regulatory processes within cells to increase the cells’ production of a particular substance. Metabolic engineering techniques can be used to redirect...

Catalyzing Commercialization: DNA Sequencing: A New Diagnostic Tool for the Oil Industry

November
2016
Catalyzing Commercialization
The U.S. oil industry is trying to do more with less, as operators seek to maximize reservoir production during a period of low oil prices. Producers are looking for cost-effective technology advances that can give them a competitive advantage to maintain profitability. One such technology may come from an unlikely source: the Human Genome Project.

YPOV: Happy Hour Etiquette: How to Behave at After-Hours Functions

November
2016
YPOV
Emily Frangenberg
The end of the year is fast approaching, which means countless office holiday parties are just around the corner. Attending a work holiday party or happy hour can be a fun way to engage and network with coworkers in a relaxed setting. However, if...

Editorial: The Introverted Leader — An Oxymoron?

November
2016
Editorial
Cynthia Mascone
For as long as I can remember, I’ve thought of myself as an introvert. Susan Cain, the author of Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking, explains that introversion is a preference for lower-stimulation environments...

Feeling the Pinch?

November
2016
Business
Santanu Bandyopadhyay, Dominic C. Y. Foo, P.E., Raymond R. Tan
Tight budgets can make prioritizing engineering projects difficult. Use the financial pinch technique to allocate funds logically and visually.

Leadership Q&A: Leading a Business from Startup to Scaleup

November
2016
Leadership Q&A
Genomatica, a bioengineering technology leader, has successfully grown past its startup phase and has established a presence in the chemical industry. It has raised over $100 million in financing, built partnerships with some of the largest global...

Profile: Merging Engineering and Policy on an Unconventional Path

October
2016
Profile
Photo by John Farley “I’m very passionate about interdisciplinary education,” says Jami Summey-Rice, an undergraduate chemical engineering student at the Univ. of Houston (UH). “The lack of interdisciplinary education at the university level is...

AIChE Journal Highlight: Designing Materials for a Sustainable Future

October
2016
Journal Highlight
As the pressing needs of the world gradually shift toward the sustainable supply of energy and raw materials, preservation of natural resources and the environment, and targeted delivery of services and products, new opportunities arise for chemical...

Technical Entity Trends: Please Drink Responsibly

October
2016
Technical Entity Trends
Lucy Lyudmila Alexander
The labels sustainable, biodynamic, organic, and natural are becoming almost as commonplace on wine bottles as the vintage. The addition of these descriptors only furthers wine’s reputation for ambiguity and complexity, but they have a real meaning...

Career Corner: Should You Get an MBA?

October
2016
Career Corner
Loraine Kasprzak
In the April 2016 column, I wrote about transitioning to a career in sales engineering if you are drawn to the business side of chemical engineering. But what if you aspire to a senior management role or want to combine your technical smarts with...

Creating a Culture of Diversity

October
2016
Career Catalyst
Zenaida Otero Gephardt, Vincent G. Grassi , Alon McCormick , Otis Shelton
An inclusive workplace with a diverse workforce ensures that the best talent is at the table and that everyone’s ideas can be heard. A strong diversity culture, like a strong safety culture, is good for business, the profession, and our individual career advancement.

Editorial: To Trust or Not To Trust (Your Gut)?

October
2016
Editorial
Cynthia Mascone
Have you ever made a decision that you knew was right, but you were not able to articulate why? As engineers, we rely heavily on data and analysis to make important decisions. We would not try to design a plant by gut feel, or justify a capital...

Develop a Data System for Your Pilot Plant

October
2016
Process Development
Mark Fisher
The data requirements of a pilot facility are just as important as the plant’s physical components. Follow this guidance to design and deploy a robust process data system for your pilot plant.

Material Matters: The Promises and Perils of Reactive Materials

October
2016
Material Matters
Kirk Richardson
The reactive metals titanium and zirconium are some of the most corrosion-resistant materials of construction, making them attractive options for severe-service applications. Reactive metals have a high affinity for oxygen and other interstitial...

2015 AIChE Salary Survey

June
2015
Salary Survey
Chemical engineers continue to earn more than the average U.S. worker. The median salary of survey respondents is $127,000 — a 5.8% increase over the median reported in 2013. This is an expanded version of an article that appeared in the June 2015 issue of Chemical Engineering Progress.

New Products: October 2016

October
2016
New Products
Product Focus: Laboratory Equipment Disposable Glove Offers Chemical Protection and Comfort Lab researchers perform delicate tasks every day, such as manipulating eyedroppers, tweezers, and syringes. Traditional disposable gloves provide high...

Integrating Process Safety and Innovation

October
2016
Safety
Peter Lodal, Jennifer Mize
It’s important to consider process safety early in the innovation process. Use a success modes and effects analysis to ensure your innovation can be safely and economically commercialized.

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