We’re starting the new year off right

The magazine and Web site are gaining significant enhancements. We’ve ratcheted up our efforts to identify ways of better serving you. As a result, we’re launching several features that we hope will make Chemical Processing and ChemicalProcessing.com even more valuable to you.

By Mark Rosenzweig, Editor in Chief

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First, you’ll find the initial installment of a new monthly column called Energy Saver. Energy always has been a major factor in the economics of chemical manufacturing and there have been notable developments over the years, both in design methodology and equipment efficiency. Now, however, saving energy has assumed an even more crucial role, given the steep rise in power and fuel costs over the past few years.

The column is being written by Christopher Russell, who served for seven years as director, industry sector, for the Alliance to Save Energy, Washington, D.C., and now is principal of Energy Pathfinder Management Consulting LLC in Baltimore, Md. He will provide practical guidance to help your plant save energy.

Of course, we will continue to publish energy-related articles, too. For instance, February’s cover story will focus on energy efficiency.

Second, this month we are offering our first online seminar (webinar). We deliberately chose to address a critical problem that afflicts many plants — over-alarming control systems due to inadequate alarm management. Titled “Avoid alarm blunders,” this free tutorial builds upon an article we published last year, and features commentary by that article’s author Mik Marvan of Matrikon, Edmonton, Alta., which has collaborated with us in developing the seminar.

You will be able to access this about-20-minute webinar 24/7 via ChemicalProcessing.com and we intend to keep it available on the site for 12 months. While this “canned” session can’t allow you to pose questions and get answers in real-time, Mik will respond afterwards to your e-mailed queries.

Check out the webinar and let us know what you think about it. Also, tell us what other topics you’d like to see addressed. In addition, we’re eager to find out whether you prefer such canned presentations watched at your convenience to live webinars at specific times, and how long you’re game to spend at an online session.

Another enhancement that the Web makes possible is hot-linking. While we for a long time have cited specific “urls” in print, now when you view content in the digital edition of the magazine or on ChemicalProcessing.com, you’ll find working hot links. For instance, check out December’s cover story on process intensification for reactors — you can click on a hot link that will take you to an animation that shows how cavitation can speed reactions.

We hope you like these improvements. And, here, too, the Web makes it easier for you to let us know. To foster your feedback, we’re starting regular online surveys so that you can tell us what you like and don’t like about each month’s issue of the magazine — and, more importantly, what specific topics, features and further refinements you’d suggest. Of course, you’ll be able to get to the surveys via a hot link, both from the digital edition of the magazine and the Web site. Likewise, we’re looking for your input to help us better tailor ChemicalProcessing.com to your needs. Simply click on the hot links on our home page to provide your feedback.

Expect more enhancements. And help us determine what they should be.

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