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Center for Energy Initiatives (CEI)

The Center for Energy Initiatives is an AIChE Industry Technology Group devoted to the development, design and efficient use of energy by chemical engineers and related professionals.

Shale Gas Resource Page

February 14, 2013
To help AIChE members better understand and better communicate about shale gas, the Public Affairs & Information Committee has helped curate valuable shale gas resources.

Energy related Communities

AIChE communities that address energy-related topics include: Catalysis and Reaction Engineering Division Environmental Division Fuels & Petrochemicals Division Nuclear Engineering Division Process Development Division Sustainability Engineering Forum Transport and Energy Processes Division Research and New Technology Committee See all Divisions & Forums and Committees

CEP: News Update

December
2014
News Update
Fossil Fuels Inspire Clean-Hydrogen Catalyst; Organic Solar Cells Heat Up; Biomass Waste Gets Upgraded; New Technique Puts Catalysts on the Right Track; and more.

CEP: News Update

November
2014
News Update
AIChE’s Initial Placement Survey: Where is the Class of 2014?; Producing More Ethanol with Less-Sensitive Microbes; Stretchable Patch Provides First-Class Health Monitoring; New Drug Capsule Takes the Ouch Out of Injections; Hybrid Device Combines a Solar Cell and a Battery.

CEP: News Update

October
2014
News Update
Tiny Assembly Line Builds Organic Molecules One Side Group at a Time; Engineered Microbes Synthesize Bio-Propane; Buckyballs Boost Organic Solar Cell Efficiency; Masquerade Ball: Squid Skin Inspires a New Material; A Microbial Approach to Pain Management; Phase Change: Liquid Battery for Grid-Scale Storage; and more.

CEP: News Update

September
2014
News Update
The Science Behind the Breakthrough Ebola Treatment; Polymers Crystallize into Zeolite-Like Structures; Magnetic Attraction: New Material Guides Fluid Flow; MoS2 Pushes Graphene Aside for Fast DNA Sequencing; and more.

CEP: News Update

August
2014
News Update
New Materials Combine Ultralight Weight with Ultrahigh Strength; A Breakthrough for Redox Flow Batteries; Carbon Nanotubes Catalyze Inexpensive Hydrogen; Diabetes Microchip Is as Good as Gold; and more.

CEP: Catalyzing Commercialization - An Elegant Design Makes Compressed Air a Contender for Grid-Scale Storage

August
2014
Catalyzing Commercialization
The potential for the integration of large amounts of renewable energy sources with the electricity grid will require large-scale storage devices. Compressed-air energy storage (CAES) is a cost-effective option for multi-hour storage applications. SustainX, a venture-capital-backed spin-out of Dartmouth College’s Thayer School of Engineering, has developed a novel isothermal CAES technology that promises to eliminate the disadvantages of traditional CAES.

CEP: News Update

July
2014
News Update
Nanoparticles Detect Sulfur Content in Crude Oil; Putting Waste Heat to Work; New Process Prints Personalized Drugs; EPA to Cut CO2 from Power Plants; Microbes Convert Biodiesel Waste into Valuable Chemicals

CEP: News Update

October
2013
News Update
Crunching the Numbers on Grid-Scale Storage; Microbes Convert Waste into Electricity; Solar Cells Make the Right Connection; Engineered Tissue Mingles with Blood Vessels; and more.

CEP: News Update

June
2014
News Update
Plastics with a Circulatory System for Regeneration; A Smart Hydrogel Never Overstays its Welcome; Nanoparticle Drugs Deliver 1-2-3 Punch; and more

CEP: News Update

May
2014
News Update
Stick-On Health Tracker Twists, Stretches, and Bends; No Corn Needed: Ethanol Is Produced from CO; Engineered Bacteria Turn Switchgrass into Jet Fuel; Reversing Evolution Promises Cheaper Pharmaceuticals; and more.

An Oil Refinery Walk-Through

May
2014
Back To Basics
Tim Olsen
Refineries may appear complicated at first glance. Breaking them down into a series of units makes them easier to understand. This article describes the basic building blocks of a fuels refinery, from crude oil inlet to fuels distribution.

CEP: News Update

April
2014
News Update
How Well Are We Preparing ChE Students for Industry?; Climate FAQs: Science Academies Answer 20 Questions; Electronic Shrink Wrap Conforms to a Beating Heart; Biomass and Sunlight Cooperate to Produce Electricity; and more.

CEP: News Update

March
2014
News Update
Silicon Anode Gets a Fruity Makeover; New Anode Provides a Home for Plus-Sized Na+ Ions; A Flicker of Hope for Nonflammable Li-Ion Batteries; Bio-Inspired Glass Is Bendable; and more.

CEP: News Update

January
2014
News Update
Harmless Virus Helps Assemble Li-O2 Cathode for Batteries; A Sticky Solution for Tissue Engineering; Biopatch Catalyzes Bone Regeneration; Shape-Shifting Material Heats Up; and more

Special Section: Energy - Lithium-Ion Batteries: The Basics

October
2013
Special Section
Robert Spotnitz
Batteries come in a variety of chemistries and designs. Using fundamental principles, the theoretical performance of these electrochemical cells can be determined, enabling you to engineer the optimal device.

CEP: News Update

November
2013
News Update
Genetically Engineered Yeast Consume Toxic Byproduct; New Device Performs Double Duty; Simulations Shine Light on Future Solar Materials; Closing the Voltage Gap; and more.

Optimize Energy Use in Industrial Cooling Systems

November
2013
Heat Transfer
Michael R. Muller, Michael B. Muller, Prakash Rao
Potential energy savings for chilled-water cooling systems are often overlooked. A detailed review of the cooling system along with the appropriate temperature and flowrate measurements will help you identify ways to cash in on these savings.

Special Section: Energy - Lithium-Ion Batteries: Endless Uses

October
2013
Special Section
Andrew N. Jansen
Lithium-ion batteries can be tailored to suit a range of products in almost any industry. This article describes the main applications for which these batteries are used, and explores some of the challenges hindering future advances.

CEP: News Update

September
2013
News Update
Electronic Skin Lights Up When Touched; Nature-Inspired Windows Cool Themselves Down; First Commercial Production of Cellulosic Biofuel Begins; Water-Splitting Process Produces H2 Isothermally; and more

CEP: News Update

August
2013
News Update
Hot Off the Press: The World’s First 3D-Printed Battery; Nonmetal Compound Catalyzes CO2-to-Methanol Reaction; Iron Catalyst Gives Hydrogenation a Green Makeover; and more

CEP: News Update

July
2013
News Update
Inkjet-Printed Graphene Rolls Out; UV Treatment Improves Membrane Selectivity; Additive Sweetens the Prospects for Organic Electronics; Protective Coating Connects Electronics and Living Tissue; and more.

CEP: AIChE Journal Highlight - Reduce Water Use in Steam Systems

July
2013
Journal Highlight
Steam systems are the largest consumer of energy in the U.S. manufacturing sector, and are prominent in the chemical process industries (CPI), where steam is critical to several ubiquitous processes, including distillation, stripping, cracking, and...

Algal Biofuels: The Backstory

March
2011
SBE Special Section
Arjun Gopalratnam
Increasing energy demand and dwindling energy resources have spurred interest in making transportation fuels from renewable sources such as microalgae.

Algal Biofuels: The Process

March
2011
SBE Special Section
Al Darzins, Eric P. Knoshaug
The production of algal biofuels involves algae cultivation, biomass harvesting and dewatering, lipid extraction, and conversion to fuel.

CEP: News Update

May
2013
News Update
Artificial Organs Hot Off the Press; Biofuel Byproducts and Concrete Mix It Up; Squid Inspires Material for Medical Implants; Polymer Chains Line Up to Provide High Performance; Ribbons of VO2 and Graphene Enable Ultrafast Batteries; and more.

Conducting an Energy Design Review

May
2013
Energy
Emily Thorn Corthay, Megan Dover, Robert Griesbach, Robert Storey
Formal energy design reviews help to ensure that energy is treated as a key factor in decision-making throughout the various stages of a design project. This approach can significantly improve a site’s energy performance. An energy design review (EDR...

CEP: News Update

April
2013
News Update
News Feature: Graphene Marches Down a Long Road to Commercialization A Stretchable, Rechargeable Li-Ion Battery Makes its Debut Defects Strengthen Magnesium Alloys Gold Lights the Way to Quantum-Dot Solar Cells Japan Taps into Fire Ice A Phase-...

CEP: Update

March
2013
News Update
Color-Shifting Fibers Take their Lead from Nature; Nanocapsules Target Cancer Cells without Harming Healthy Ones ; Graphene Straightens Out with Some Help from Copper; Silicon Made Easy for Batteries; and more.

CEP: Profile - A Chemical Engineering Powerhouse

February
2013
Profile
I like to think of myself as an engineer with an ability to bring various disciplines together to tackle tough challenges,” says Narayan Ramesh, Associate R&D Director at Dow Solar, and recipient of AIChE’s inaugural Industrial Progress Award...

Addressing Energy Supply Vulnerabilities

April
2006
Critical Issues
Herbert W. Cooper
Can a mega-worldwide energy interruption occur? The perfect storm may be brewing with such events as natural disasters, acts of terrorism and international disputes. This article explains how your company can prepare to effectively handle an energy...

Fuel Cells, the Hydrogen Economy and You

November
2007
On The Horizon
Herbert W. Cooper
Chemical engineers will play an important role in the development and deployment of fuel cells. This primer summarizes some of the key technical and economic issues that must be overcome.

CEP: News Update

February
2013
News Update
Now Available: High-Performance Carbon Nanotube Fibers; Nanowire-Based Solar Cell Achieves Record Performance; Fireflies Share Their Light Tricks with LEDs; Tissue Adhesives Are Inspired by the Prickly Porcupine; New Coating Shields Against Nearly All Liquids; and more.

The Hydrogen Economy Is Coming - The Question is Where?

December
2005
On The Horizon
Charles W. Forsberg
The end of the oil age is coming. While the replacements for oil are uncertain, the leading candidates have one thing in common — the need for massive quantities of hydrogen in the production process.

CEP: News Update

January
2013
News Update
Global Relationships Take Center Stage at the 2012 Annual Meeting; No Boiling Needed: Nanoparticles Convert Sunlight into Steam; Hydrogen Power Goes Mobile; Carbon Nanotubes Team Up with Graphene; New Process Brings Bendable Electronics Closer to Reality; and more.

CEP: Update

December
2012
News Update
Oxide Catalysts Get Selective; New Catalyst Challenges Platinum; Quick-Release Tape Peels with Ease; Electronic Skin Mimics the Human Epidermis

Engineering Complex Phenotypes in Industrial Strains

November, 2012
This book explains current trends and developments in engineering biocatalysts for the production of bulk chemical and biofuels from renewable biomass. The authors guide readers through the engineering of the complex traits and phenotypes needed for particular biocatalysts and bioprocesses.

Be Smart about Column Design

November
2012
Reactions and Separations
Daniel R. Summers, P.E., Mark Pilling, P.E.
Optimizing distillation equipment and processes can improve both the profitability and the greenness of an operation.

Cut Agitator Power Costs

November
2012
Back To Basics
Gregory T. Benz, P.E.
Agitator power consumption can be minimized by judicious equipment selection and careful operating procedures. Follow these guidelines to reduce your plant’s energy costs. In some cases, it may be as simple as flipping a switch.

CEP: News Update

November
2012
News Update
Magic Act: Electronics Disappear into their Surroundings; New Material Boasts World-Record Efficiency; Brain Cancer Studies Point to a Bio-Based Route to Nylon; Nickel Misbehaves in Li-ion Batteries, Solar Energy Gets Mixed Up

CEP: News Update

October
2012
News Update
New Battery Takes Charge of its Power; Nanomaterial Reversibly Stores Hydrogen; Nanoparticles Sneak Past the Brain’s Armor ; and more

CEP: News Update

September
2012
News Update
Slippery Surface Is Too Slick for Bacterial Films; New Materials Put the Brakes on Infection; ITO Flexes Its Muscles; Control Wrinkles with this Simple Method; and more

CEP: News Update

August
2012
News Update
Updates Include: The Natural Gas Debate Continues Smart Material Stays Cool in the Heat Firefly-Semiconductor Hybrid Lights Up Ionic Liquid Improves Hydrogen-Producing Catalyst One-Pot Synthesis Yields Zeolites at Bargain Prices High-Carbon Diet...

Producing Hot Water by Direct Steam Injection

May
2010
Back To Basics
Philip Sutter
Inline direct steam injection is more energy efficient than indirectly heating water in a tank. Use this overview of DSI equipment to select the appropriate system for your application.

Saving Energy in Multilevel Steam Systems

January
2012
Back To Basics
Wiroon Tanthapanichakoon
Avoid some common pitfalls by taking this holistic approach when implementing projects to reduce the consumption of steam.

IGCC Power Generation - Down But Not Out

September
2008
News Feature
Suzanne Shelley
Many technology advances are underway to address cost, CO2 and reliability issues and expand the use of integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC), a cleaner way to generate electricity from coal.

Polysilicon Business Shines Brightly

August
2008
News Feature
Gerald Parkinson
To meet growing demand for solar energy, new polysilicon plants are being built at an unprecedented rate, and several new technologies will play a role in the capacity expansion.

Sustainable Development in the Process Industries: Cases and Impact

March, 2010
The complete, hands-on guide to sustainable development Today's process industries must develop natural resources within an eco-friendly framework that balances current demand with future need. Realizing this goal necessitates global vigilance of three key areas—people, planet, and prosperity—known...

Climate Change - What Does the Research Mean?

June
2009
Critical Issues
Michael J. Economides, Xina Xie
Claims within the science community about whether and how global warming is affecting hurricane intensity and frequency, the ice field of Mount Kilimanjaro, and the polar ice masses are inconsistent and warrant further investigation before any...

Biobutanol – A Replacement for Bioethanol?

August
2008
SBE Special Section
Ron Cascone
Ethanol, the leading incumbant biofuel, has several limitations.Butanol overcomes many of these, and holds promise as the next important transportation biofuel.

Save Energy Through Automation

January
2010
Instrumentation
Douglas C. White
Identifying the right automation investments — those with low costs and high impacts — can result in millions of dollars in energy savings for petrochemical plants. <br>

Nuclear Power: Fueling the Hydrogen Economy

July
2010
Special Section
William A. Summers
Nuclear hydrogen might first enter the transportation market to supplement existing fossil resources. In the long-term, it could be a key in the development of a hydrogen economy.

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.

Metabolic Engineering of Next-Generation Biofuels

August
2008
SBE Special Section
Wendy Higashide, James C. Liao
Engineers are turning to genetic and biological tools and techniques to synthesize higher-chain alcohols that do not suffer from the same limitations as ethanol.

Gazing into an Energy Crystal Ball

June
2010
On The Horizon
Vern W. Weekman Jr.
By mid-century, new energy sources could be integrated into the existing chemical-conversion infrastructure, but additional research is needed to fine-tune the technologies and improve efficiencies and economics.

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.

Developing a Position on Nuclear Power

July
2010
Special Section
AIChE’s Nuclear Engineering Division recommends expanding the role of nuclear power and closing the nuclear fuel cycle. <br>

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