Outsourcing of non-core operations within a company, large or small, is now a well established corporate strategy. By entrusting services such as IT support, accounting, human resources and other back office activities to specialist firms prepared to do the job at an acceptable price, chemical companies can concentrate on their main business where they are the specialists. That's the theory, at least.
A recent poll provides an industrial perspective and points up its troubling implications. As many universities are discovering, science and technology arent as popular as they once were. It's your job to spread the word, however small.
Author: Mike Spear, editor at large, Hertfordshire, U.K.
Nanotechnology is grabbing headlines these days and the growing prospects of its use is spurring increasing attention to safety issues. This article examines the worldwide reaction to burgeoning popularity of the technology and what safety concerns are legit.
Properly accounting for how bulk solids actually will flow in a vessel or overall process can be crucial for successful operations. Learning some simple parameters can often provide a good sense of flowability.
Author: Don McGlinchey, Glasgow Caledonian University
Residue curve mapping is a powerful tool to better understand the design and operation of distillation columns. This article describes how to use residue curve maps to check the feasibility of separation of homogeneous mixtures and for developing the conceptual design of towers.
No manufacturers claim, third-party analysis or certification report reduces the users responsibility for determining that a product is fit for its purpose. Make sure to properly balance analysis and testing information with field experience.
Author: Angela E. Summers and Susan Wiley, SIS-TECH Solutions, LP
The first plant to go from biomass to syngas to biodiesel is slated for 2007 startup. Once started up early next year, the unit will feed in 75,000 mt/yr of wood chips and straw to make so-called SunDiesel.
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Chemical processors face significant challenges in controlling fugitive emissions. The emissions escape from valves, compressors, pumps, piping components, etc. It is a difficult task, but necessary to avoid penalties and other liability.
Theres no simple solution to achieving accurate temperature measurement. Its a combination of knowing the inherent accuracy of particular sensor types, and how environmental factors can create further measurement uncertainty and the sensor calibration techniques available to reduce this uncertainty.
Author: Cal Swanson, Watlow Electric Manufacturing Co.
The proper hand protection plays a tremendous role in keeping plant workers safe. This article answers questions often posed by workers and managers about hand protection products, their applications and limitations.
While most mixers can provide a long service life for instance, some are still operating after more than 30 years mechanical problems can shorten life or even break parts. In this article, learn about all the mechanical problems that may befall your mixing equipment.
Changes in liquid densities can throw off readings. Plants commonly rely on differential pressure (DP) cells to measure level. Read this month's Plant InSites for advice on how to solve these level problems.