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Processing & Handling

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Piping Design, Part 2 – Flanges

  Pipe flanges are used to mechanically connect pipe sections to other pipe sections, inline components, and equipment. Flanges also allow pipe to be assembled and disassembled without cutting or welding, which eliminates the need for those two operations when…

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Operational Excellence Begins Here  

    The pressures and challenges placed on the chemical process industries (CPI) have been heralded so often that even a person on the street can articulate most of them; and the list continues to grow - cost containment, lawsuits,…

Making porous nanoparticles

Researchers from the Chemistry Dept. at the University of Minnesota (Minneapolis; edlinks.chemengonline.com/6892-535) have discovered a new way to prepare monodisperse, discrete nanoparticles of silica with specific shapes, such as cubes, tetrapods and spheres. The shaped particles can be porous, and…

Mixing From Top to Bottom

    Mixing of fluids and pasty materials is one of the most fundamental unit operations in chemical engineering. Traditionally an area in which practical experience is often more reliable than calculation, recent years have seen advances in mixing technology…

‘Step-out’ technology makes SM with less energy and greenhouse-gas emission

Exelus, Inc. (see also story on p. 11) has demonstrated a process that makes styrene monomer (SM) by the side-chain alkylation of toluene with methanol — an energy-neutral process — instead of the conventional dehydrogenation-of-ethylbenzene route, which is energy-intensive and…

Pipe passes fifty-year test

Two specimens made from Basell Corp.’s Hostalene GM5010 high-density polyethylene (HDPE) that were installed in October 1956 are still in service, according to Ulrich Schulte, head of the application and technical service for Basell’s Pipe and Sheet business unit and…

A process makes possible the large-scale synthesis of carbon nanomaterials

Researchers from the Laboratory for Sustainable Technology, School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, University of Sydney (Australia; edlinks.chemengonline.com/6891-538) have produced spiral and straight carbon nanotubes (CNTs) in a fluidized bed (FB) by adjusting the synthesis temperature, catalyst compostion, and carbon…

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Coal-to-plastics

Datang International Power Generation Co. Ltd. and Shenhua Ningxia Coal Industry Group (SNCG; both China) have awarded a contract in excess of €100 million to Lurgi AG (Frankfurt, Germany; edlinks.chemengonline.com/6891-535) as part of two projects (€1 billion per project) for…

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A new thermoplastic

GE Plastics (Pittsfield, Mass.; edlinks.chemengonline.com/6891-543) has launched Extem thermoplastic polyimide (TPI) resins, a new family of amorphous polymers. The new resin is said to overcome the drawbacks of semicrystalline materials, imidized thermosets and competitive amorphous thermoplastics. Among Extem resin’s properties…

A ‘natural’ way to make an unnatural acid

Excelsyn Molecular Development (Holywell, U.K.; edlinks.chemengonline.com/6519-541) has made a “major” advance in its development of improved technology to produce the unnatural amino acid tert-L-leucine (tert-butyl glycine; TBG) — a precursor for synthesizing promising new drug candidates. Transaminase technology is a…