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January 28, 2008
1. How has globalization affected your customer base and what do you see on the horizon to meet those challenges? Many of our customers are adopting new ways of working to stay ahead in this competitive global market. Outsourcing, insourcing, offshoring and online workgroups all create a totally new business environment. In line with these developments, our corporate mission is now focused on taking...
January 15, 2008
  At the beginning of 2008, it’s clear that global economic growth is slowing. The housing downturn has adversely affected the U.S., and the ensuing credit problems (and tightening) have spread to other nations. A key issue is whether or not the weakness has done enough damage to tip the economy toward recession. The general consensus is that it is likely that the U.S. will avoid a downturn but...
January 15, 2008
As long as the chemical process industries (CPI) have existed, catalysts have been backstage supporting, if not leading, their progress. And, as much of the chemical industry’s current research efforts center around producing cleaner products, such as transportation fuels and energy sources in a greener way, the same can be said about catalyst development. Certainly, a major reason for the clean and...
January 15, 2008
It is likely that in your work, you have crossed paths with a person you admire for a career involving excellence in chemical engineering. If you would like to recognize this individual’s accomplishments, nominate him or her for our 2008 Award for Personal Achievement in Chemical Engineering. The aim of this award, which Chemical Engineering has offered biennially since 1968, is to honor individuals...
January 15, 2008
At Pollutec 2007 (Paris, France; November 27 – 30), Veolia Water Solutions & Technologies (Paris, introduced the next generation of its Actiflo clarifier process for potable and process water — Actiflo Turbo. Like its predecessor, the patented Actiflo Turbo process uses microsand to enhance flocculation and settling, which makes the process quicker to startup, more...
January 15, 2008
Toyo Engineering Corp. (TEC; Narashino, Japan;, Modec Inc. (Tokyo, both Japan) and Velocys Inc., (Plain City, Ohio) have agreed to jointly develop a commercial gas-to-liquid (GTL) plant to be installed on a mobile platform or ship for monetizing small-to-medium sized natural gas fields. The project has the potential to utilize more than 3,000-trillion ft3 of natural gas that is...
January 15, 2008
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI; Tokyo, Japan; is marketing a new process that captures carbon dioxide from flue gas (FG) for enhanced oil recovery (EOR). The KM-CDR process uses a proprietary amine-based solvent (KS-1) in a packed column to absorb and regenerate CO2 with less energy than conventional CO2 -recovery processes and with "far less" solvent loss...
January 15, 2008
Metallic nanoparticles are usually produced by wet chemical methods, often using toxic and flammable substances, or by physical methods such as evaporation and laser ablation. A group from the Laboratory for Sustainable Technology, School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, at the University of Sydney (Australia;, has been experimenting with the synthesis of nanoparticles of...
January 15, 2008
A prototype solar reactor that will break carbon dioxide into carbon monoxide and oxygen, or split water into hydrogen and oxygen, will be started up this spring by researchers at Sandia National Laboratories (Albuquerque, N.M.; The ultimate goal of the so-called "Sunshine to Petrol" project is to recycle sequestered CO2 and combine the CO product with H2 to synthesize...
January 15, 2008
A method for the purification of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) in four sequential steps — oxidative pretreatment, acid treatment, silica dissolution, and froth flotation — has been proposed by a team from the Petroleum and Petrochemical College, Chulalongkorn University (Bangkok, Thailand; Team leader Sumaeth Chavadej says the...
January 15, 2008
Rentech, Inc. (Los Angeles, Calif.; will build its first commercial synthetic fuels plant, using the company’s proprietary Fischer-Tropsch (FT) process, near Natchez, Miss. The plant will gasify locally purchased petroleum coke or barged-in coal, along with at least 5% biomass. The resultant syngas of H 2 and CO will be converted to straight-chain waxy...
January 15, 2008
Researchers from the University of Glasgow (U.K.; have designed a device that can detect pollutants, then generate its own electricity to power an early warning system. The self-powered sensor consists of a...
January 15, 2008
Basell Corp. (Frankfurt, Germany;, the National Gas Co. of Trinidad and Tobago (T&T), Ltd. (NGC) and the National Energy Corp. of T&T, Ltd. (NEC; both Point Lisas, Port of Spain)...
January 15, 2008
Last month, the European Parliament (Brussels, Belgium) approved a new air-quality directive, which sets, for the first time, binding standards for fine particles. The directive on air quality is one measure outlined in the 2005 Thematic Strategy on air...
January 15, 2008
Gulf Ethanol Corp. (Houston, Tex.; recently acquired an exclusive license to the vortex-implosion-disintegrator technology...
January 15, 2008
UOP LLC (Des Plaines, Ill.; has partnered with the University of Southern California’s (USC) Loker Hydrocarbon Research Institute (Los Angeles...
January 15, 2008
Animal and vegetable oils and fats are a key renewable feedstock for making detergents, soaps, lubricants, paints, coatings, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals, as well as additives for plastics, rubber and textiles...
January 15, 2008
Royal Dutch Shell Plc. (The Hague, Netherlands; and HR Biopetroleum (Honolulu, Hawaii; have begun construction of a pilot facility to grow marine algae, which will be harvested for producing vegetable oil that will be converted...
December 15, 2007
At the Chem Show last month (New York; Oct. 30 – Nov. 1), Resodyn Acoustic Mixers Inc. (Butte, Mont.; demonstrated its new, impeller-free mixing technology, which induces microscale turbulence through the propagation of acoustic waves. Dubbed ResonantAcoustic Mixing (RAM), the now commercially available process promises solutions for many of the complications associated with...
December 15, 2007
Last month at a gala dinner at New York’s Rainbow Room, Chemical Engineering (CE) had the pleasure of honoring this year’s finalists and the winner of the 2007 Kirkpatrick Chemical Engineering Achievement Award, a biennial prize that the magazine has bestowed continuously since the early 1930s (for more, see CE, January 2007, p. 23). This year’s event recognized the most noteworthy...
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