AIChE | The Global Home of Chemical Engineers

The Price is Right -- Or Is It?

December
2003
Management
Glen Rosentrater - 
Contractors' quotes often differ significantly -- by up to 30% is not uncommon, and may be legitimate. Here's how to analyze bids to be able to award a fairly priced contract.

Leadership: The Skill Most Needed

June
2004
Career Catalyst
Stanley I. Proctor
Do you have leadership potential? This article explores the differences between leadership and management, the qualities of a good leader, different leadership styles and where they are effective and not effective, and other issues.

Optimizing Batch Operations

January
2006
Reactions and Separations
Kah Loong Choong, Robin Smith
Use this novel method to optimize the operating conditions as they vary through time in batch processes.

Use Cascade Analysis to Optimize Water Networks

July
2006
Environmental Management
Dominic Chwan Yee Foo, Zainuddin Abdul Manan, Yin Ling Tan
This numerical technique for identifying fresh water and wastewater targets eliminates the tedious and time-consuming steps of graphical targeting approaches. Use it to complement the graphical techniques in the design and retrofit of water networks.

Mitigating Global Climate Change Through Power-Generation Technology

November
2007
Critical Issues
Frank Princiotta
With the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change set to release its Fourth Assessment Synthesis Report later this month, now is a good time for chemical engineers to take a look at this topic. This article provides a succinct integration of...

Contemplating a New Phase of Your Career

April
2010
Career Catalyst
Lisa L. Walker
Today’s employment environment has altered the concept of “career.” If you are attempting to change jobs or enter a different industry — or even considering a second career — it is important to understand your motivations and proceed with care.

Reduce Risk When Sourcing Abroad

October
2010
Fluids and Solids Handling
Gregory T. Benz, Ling Du
Purchasing lower-cost process equipment from vendors in developing nations can be an attractive proposition in times of economic austerity. When sourcing outside local channels, keep the points discussed here in mind to avoid costly problems that go...

Conference Explores Developing Bioeconomy

March
2008
Special Section
Brad Buecker
Infrastructure, biomass conversion, sources of biomass, and environmental and other impacts are some of the challenges facing the commercialization of biofuels.

Purifying Therapeutic Monoclonal Antibodies

May
2008
SBE Special Section
Jace Fogle, Nuno Fontes, Benedicte Lebreton, Amy Len, Amit Mehta, Robert van Reis, Roshan Shrestha, Martha Lovato Tse, Bradley Wolk
Eliminating the affinity chromatography step in the mAb purification process trims equipment requirements, shrinks the plant footprint— and reduces costs.

Optimize Pipeline Design for Non-Newtonian Fluids

March
2002
Fluids and Solids Handling
 Edgar Amaro  Ronces, Cinthya Alejandra Anguilar Guerrero, Alejandro Anaya Durand
Use this graphical method to determine pipe diameter, fluid temperature and pressure drop for laminar and turbulent flow.

Control and Optimize Nonlinear Systems

February
2003
Instrumentation
Andrew C. Burden, Pradeep B. Deshpande, Roberto Z. Tantalean
Turbocharging a contrained model predictive controller (CMPC) with fuzzy logic allows CMPCs to be applied over nonlinear systems

Simulating Aqueous Processes

September
2003
Reactions and Separations
Joel B. Christian
Simulation that includes aqueous modeling can also account for full vapor/liquid/solid equilibria modeling, including redox chemistry.

Boost Your Group’s Performance

September
2005
Career Catalyst
Charles Gillard
Working with employees to define “doing a good job” can improve organizational performance as well as employee satisfaction.

Dealing with Climate Change at the Local Level

February
2008
Opinion
Paul A. Jennings
Whatever problems may be caused by climate change, engineers will be expected to solve them.Now is the time to begin addressing the issues at the local and regional scale.

Getting to Win-Win

September
2008
Career Catalyst
Ryland W. Musick Jr., Eldon R. Larsen
Conflict is an almost unavoidable part of life and work, and it can lead to surprisingly constructive opportunities. Here is a discussion of how to manage conflicts— and how to make the most of them when they occur.

Books

May
2012
Books
Learn about Physical and Chemical Equilibrium for Chemical Engineers, 2nd Edition; Chemical Thermodynamics for Process Simulation; and Piping System Fundamentals: The Complete Guide to Gaining a Clear Picture of Your Piping System, 2nd Edition.

Find Mixing Success through Failures - Part 1

October
2008
Fluids and Solids Handling
David S. Dickey, Gary K. Patterson
Understanding when and why mixing fails in the laboratory is often the only way of avoiding a similar failure in a production-scale reactor.

Succeed in Business in Eastern Europe

November
2002
Career Catalyst
Lionel F. Laroche, Susan Morey
Eastern Europe is a significant potential market for Western corporations. There are plenty of opportunities for success if you learn to do business in a way that meshes with Eastern European expectations of how business should be done.

Work Effectively with Your Patent Attorney

April
2003
Career Catalyst
Steven J. Helmer
By understanding the basics of patent law and by establishing a close working relationship with your attorneys, you can ensure that you receive the broadest possible patent protection.

Shaping a New Role for the Operator

May
2004
Management
Ian  Nimmo, Peter  Bullemer,  Sandra  Foreman
In the future, operating teams may proactively manage their plants to maximize safety and minimize environmental impact, while pushing the processes to their optimal limits. Here's how to achieve the necessary paradigm shift by giving operators an...

Pipeline Pressure Drop: A New Design Correlation

June
2006
Fluids and Solids Handling
Roger Gilmont
A linear equation has been derived to accurately calculate the flowrate of fluids in the laminar and turbulent regions, and to derive an equation for use in the transitional regions.

Industry and SBE News

October
2007
SBE Special Section
Dr. George Georgiou to Receive SBE's James E. Bailey Award; Averting an Epidemic— Novel Device Detects Avian Flu Virus in Less than Half an Hour; Cell-Free Protein Sythesis Comes of Age; Genetically Engineering Microorganisms into Pharmaceutical...

Evaluating Cooling Tower Upgrades

May
2008
Heat Transfer
Tom Dendy
When considering improvements to cooling towers, it's important to perform an economic analysis of the options.

Minimize Scale-Up Risk

March
2010
SBE Special Section
J. Brad Cort, Thomas Pschorn, Bertil Stromberg
Proven commercial-scale equipment already exists for many operations involved in producing biofuels from lignocellulosic feedstocks.

Identifying Corrosion and Its Causes

April
2011
Fluids and Solids Handling
Gary Geiger, Mel J. Esmacher, P.E.
An important first step in maintaining equipment reliability and efficiency is understanding the various types of corrosion damage that can occur.

An Introduction to Immunity and Vaccines

November
2011
SBE Special Section
Derek Lapiska
An understanding of the basic approach to creating vaccines, as well as how vaccines confer immunity, is essential to developing safe and cost-effective formulations.

The Future of Coal-Based Power Generation

March
2008
Special Section
James R. Katzer
Despite its image as a dirty fuel, coal remains an economic choice for baseload power generation—and it can, in fact, have very low emissions.

Take the Tedium Out of Writing Process Descriptions

February
2001
Instrumentation
Michael J. Gentilcore
Setting up a special function and a shorthand system on a spreadsheet can improve the descriptions needed for implementing a process control system, while minimizing the monotony in writing them.

Burning Bright: Trends in Process Integration

July
2001
Process Development
Nick  Hallale 
Process integration has a far wider scope and touches every area of process design. Industries are making more money from their raw materials and capital assets, while becoming cleaner and more sustainable.

Write a Better Brochure

October
2001
Career Catalyst
Robert W. Bly
Engineers are often called on to review product brochures and ads for equipment and processes. Here are six tips for working more effectively with an ad agency or corporate marketing-communications department to create good product literature.

Squeeze More Out of Complex Columns

July
2002
Reactions and Separations
Piyush Shah
These distillation setups can cut capital and operating costs by up to 30%, and increase separation efficiency. Here is a straightforward method for evaluation.

Good Drug Therapy: It's Not Just the Molecule - It's the DELIVERY

February
2004
Special Section
Rita D'Aquino
In today's competitive marketplace, biopharmaceutical companies are seeking effective and user-friendly drug-delivery platforms for their drug molecules. Miniaturized, microfabricated and nanofabricated devices that can be implanted in the body are...

Clarifying Centrifuge Operation and Selection

August
2004
Fluids and Solids Handling
Victor Norton ,  William Wilkie
Before selecting a centrifuge for your application, understand its principles of operation and investigate the key process variables.

Pumping System Head Estimation

February
2005
Fluids and Solids Handling
James Anthony
These spreadsheets highlight losses, uncertainties and value of power used, helping you optimize pumping system designs and save on operating costs.

Tools to Model Multiphase Separation

June
2007
Fluids and Solids Handling
David Connolly, Saeid Mokhatab, Timothy Newton
The flow fields in multiphase separators are often extremely complicated, making it difficult to model such systems. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and visual dynamic modeling (VDM) can be used together to overcome some of the challenges.

Use Model-Predictive Control to Improve Distillation Operations

January
2008
Instrumentation
Robert J. Conroy, Umesh Mathur, Robert D. Rounding, Daniel R. Webb
This methodology, based on steady-state and dynamic simulation, can be used to develop the necessary models— and avoid disruptive and costly step testing to the extent feasible.

Predicting Emissivities of Combustion Gases

June
2009
Heat Transfer
Alireza Bahadori, Hari B. Vuthaluru
Use this new correlation, which employs easy-to-solve algebraic equations to estimate gas emissivities, to simplify the design and optimization of boilers, furnaces and other combustion equipment.

Your Personal Genome for $1,000?

November
2009
SBE Special Section
IBM scientists from four fields — nanofabrication, microelectronics, physics and biology — are collaborating to develop a “DNA transistor” that could make obtaining a personalized genome analysis easier, faster, and cheaper — ultimately as low as $...

Measuring and Communicating Sustainability through Eco-Efficiency Analysis

December
2010
Environmental Management
Peter Saling, Bruce W. Uhlman
Eco-efficiency analysis promotes an understanding of the economic and environmental trade-offs over products’ lifecycles, and supports informed, strategic decision-making in all areas of a business, from spurring innovative product development to...

Selecting the Proper Flare System

July
2011
Back To Basics
Adam Bader, Wes Bussman, Charles E. Baukal Jr., P.E.
Flares allow for the safe, effective disposal of gases and liquids, by acting as relief devices when a plant must quickly dispose of product within its system to prevent overpressurization and potential explosions.

Improve Your Reading Efficiency and Speed

March
2003
Career Catalyst
Robert W. Bly
Are you feeling overwhelmed by the daily influx of memos, letters, reports and journals? These tips will help you develop a systematic method for dealing with the endless stream of material that is essential to your job.

Preparing for GHG Inventory Verification

April
2004
Environmental Management
- Lauren M. Sandler, James T. Wintergreen
To ensure that the greenhouse gas inventory is accurate and complete, prepare for eventual third-party verification during the planning and data collection stages.

Properly Select Equipment for SIP Systems

August
2007
Fluids and Solids Handling
Tony George
Sterilization-in-place (SIP) systems are essential to the operation of many pharmaceutical and biotech facilities. This article reviews design considerations, selection criteria and performance expectations for control valves, regulators, isolation...

Analyzing Equilibrium when Noncondensables Are Present

April
2008
Environmental Management
Allen Hatfield
With the simplifying assumption that all of the noncondensable gases exit via the vapor stream, material balances and equilibrium calculations can be used to determine the compositions of the emissions streams leaving a control device.

Examining X-Ray Technology

March
2009
Fluids and Solids Handling
Ray Spurgeon
Use X-ray inspection to see whether your product is contaminant-free and packaged properly.

Successfully Navigate the Negotiation Process

February
2010
Career Catalyst
Lisa L. Walker
Employment negotiations begin even before a job offer is extended. Having a clear plan of action, and an understanding of your objectives and those of your employer, will help you make the most of this important process. <br>

Reduce Your Compressed Air Costs

October
2011
Fluids and Solids Handling
Ron Marshall, Bill Scales
Annual operating expenses for compressed air systems can exceed the equipment’s purchase price. Follow these seven steps to implement efficiency measures that yield cost reductions.

Optimize Heat Exchanger Cleaning Schedules

June
2001
Heat Transfer
Bruce A. Barna, Chris D. Gosling, Brendan R. O'Donnel
Get the most out of your heat exchanger by evaluating the trade-offs between a one-time expenditure and reduced operating expenses, increased income, and/or longer operating life span. Brendan R. O'Donnell - Bruce A. Barna - Chris D. Gosling -

Integrate EHS for Better Process Design

February
2002
Process Development
Lisa Bendixen
Get a jump on process development by addressing environmental, health and safety (EHS) issues together early in the design and development cycle. The result will be a better process and lower costs.

Use E-mail Effectively

December
2002
Career Catalyst
Gary Blake
These tips will help improve your e-mail style and make sure that your e-mail is effective intrinsically, as well as fitting the new electronic expectations of a wide range of cyber colleagues.

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