December 2023 cover with QR code

View Chemical Processing's History—See Our Future

Dec. 5, 2023
We’ve covered a lot in 85 years, and the next 85 look promising

As you’ll soon learn, the December issue features a big QR code on the cover (and in the lead image on this column). If you scan it, it should prompt you to access a link. Don’t worry, it’s not a pitch for a timeshare in Boca. It’s a link to a short video celebrating our 85th anniversary and an exciting announcement for our future. You’ll also be treated to my “radio” voice and cameos from Superman and Etta James as well as a glimpse into the very first iteration of the magazine— Equipment Preview for Process Industries Production Men. While the gender-specific title is certainly dated, the underlying credo: “Every item is selected because of its practical usefulness" — still defines what Chemical Processing does today.

Now, back to the December issue. The featured article in this issue is the 2023 Vaaler Award winners. Named after John C. Vaaler, who became CP’s editor-in-chief in 1946, the biennial award honors products that have the potential to significantly improve operations at plants. Of the several nominations we received, the judges, who serve on CP’s editorial board, deemed three submissions worthy of the honor. Judges commended the award-winning designs for their innovation, noting the enhanced economic benefits, improved material performance and reduced safety risks in a critical sampling process for the industry. The full story of each winner begins on page 16.

Who will be 2025’s Vaaler Award winner? It’s a little early to tell, but perhaps it could come from an emerging industry like biomanufacturing. In this issue, Executive Editor Jonathan Katz takes a look at biomanufacturing company in Ohio for his Chemical Processing Notebook series. He also explores the possibility of on-site nuclear power for chemical plants. 

But even the best innovations require ongoing maintenance and monitoring to optimize their performance. Our mechanical equipment guru, Amin Almasi, looks at key sources of stress (the machine kind, not the life kind) and offers strategies to prevent fatigue-induced failures that can lead to disastrous outcomes.

There’s a wealth of engaging content packed in this issue, which you now know is our final print edition if you have already watched the video. Chemical Processing will become a fully digital brand in 2024 and beyond.

To be clear, Chemical Processing is not going away. Quite the opposite: This move will allow us to significantly increase the scope of content we cover and strengthen our efforts to serve you. Expect an exciting variety of useful, timely and entertaining new features published on our website and in our eNewsletters.

All we ask of you now is to join us on this new phase of the journey. To ensure you continue to receive our award-winning content, please subscribe to our eNewsletters and register on our website to gain exclusive access to myriad benefits that will enhance your professional journey. Follow the QR code to the video to easily sign up for our newsletters and become a member of the website. Not a fan of QR codes? Here’s the video: 

On behalf of all the editors who have come before me, thank you for letting us have the privilege to witness the industry’s ongoing transformation. I hope to continue serving you for the next 85 years—well, not me personally. But you know what I mean.
About the Author

Traci Purdum | Editor-in-Chief

Traci Purdum, an award-winning business journalist with extensive experience covering manufacturing and management issues, is a graduate of the Kent State University School of Journalism and Mass Communication, Kent, Ohio, and an alumnus of the Wharton Seminar for Business Journalists, Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia.