Chemical Plant Design and Process Economics Consultant

Technical Consultant #1133


Expertise

  • Senior Consultant with ten years of research and design experience in the Process Economics Program of SRI Consulting.
  • Experience includes 8 PEP Reports and becoming a winner of the 1996 Monsanto "Million Dollar Research Challenge" (Competition was International).
  • Preceded experience of over 33 years of diversified research, development, and design work with Dow Chemical, a Fortune 20 company.
  • During this time expertise was demonstrated in creative problem solving in basic and applied research, new product and process development, improving existing production plants, and managing design, construction and start-up of new production plants.
  • Focus has been in the polymer area, organic chemicals, and pharmaceuticals, including 27 technical publications and 47 U.S. patents.

International Competition

  • Awarded Monsanto's second $1 million challenge for our innovative research proposal in waste recovery technology.
  • Monsanto challenged the worldwide scientific community to find a practical, cost-effective technology that would recover high-purity amino acids and phosphoric and phosphorous acids from a particular waste stream, leaving clean sodium chloride.

Experience

Independent Consultant, 2001 - Present

  • Major participant in a project to develop new uses for an existing foreign world scale chemical plant.

SRI Consulting, Senior Consultant, Process Economics Program, 1994 - 2001

Process Economic Reports

  • Researched all available literature involving each technology.
  • Collecting information from industrial sources.
  • Evaluating this existing technology.
  • Researching and developing solutions to design problems; completing a process design and capital estimate based on best technology.
  • Combining an analysis of the entire field of technology with an economic analysis into the final PEP Report.

Topics covered:

  • Polyethernitrile Heat Resistant Polymer from 2,6-dichlorobenzonitrile and Resorcinol.
  • 1-4 Butanediol from maleic Anhydride via Dimethyl Maleate
  • Dendrimer Polymer from Diaminobutane and Acrylonitrile
  • Supercritical Loop Reactor Slurry Process for Producing Polyethylene and Polypropylene
  • Polybutylene Terephthalate and Butanediol
  • Phthalic Anhydride
  • 1,3-Propanediol and Polytrimethylene Terephthalate
  • Polyethylene Terephthalate
  • Polystyrene
  • Non-metallocene Single Site Catalysts

Dow Chemical Company, Midland, MI, 1956 - 1993

Occupation

  • Process Engineering Associate, Michigan Engineering, 1990 - 1993
  • Research Associate, Designed Thermoplastic Research, 1971 - 1990
  • Senior Research Specialist, Manufacturing Rep. Process Development, 1973 - 1979
  • Research Specialist, Styrene Molding Products Lab, 1970 - 1973
  • Senior Research Engineer, Nuclear and Basic Research Lab, 1961 - 1970
  • Research Engineer, Plastics Production Lab, 1956 - 1958

Problem Solving

  • Directed the team which found an environmentally acceptable process for salicylic acid (aspirin precursor), which had not been uncovered in 50 years of research and development. A world-scale plant was constructed using technology protected by two of my U.S. patents.
  • Discovered a simple method for removal of vinyl chloride from saran emulsions which allowed conformance with new environmental regulations which threatened to close the $50 million per year business.
  • Insight gained was applied to other related products. Two U.S. patents.
  • Devised a practical process for producing heat resistant copolymers from alpha-methyl styrene/ acrylonitrille, where over 30 previous studies had not found this heat resistance.
  • Related gelation theory to condensation polymerization in a new, practical way.
  • This led to a new understanding of paints, a national ACS award, and doctorate degree.

Facility Design and Development

  • Managed design and construction of a "fast-track" 3 million pound/year plant for producing t-butyl styrene. This "most complex process in the Michigan Division" was completed on time and on budget, and saved $4 million by using most of an existing facility.
  • Designed, constructed, and operated the company's first unattended pilot plant for producing high impact polystyrene copolymers. Several clones are still in operation, saving over $90,000/year each.
  • Provided complete process engineering design of all equipment in the polymerization and stripping section of an operating world scale ABS latex plant.
  • Assembled process design for the first fully integrated polybenzoxazole fiber plant, and estimated capital. Suggested changes caused research which saves $15 million capital.

New Products Development

  • Received Dow's Technology Center award for development of two commercial polystyrene products, one with extremely low monomer content, the other for a products with an improved balance of strength and processability.
  • Developed a tough heat resistant copolymer of styrene/maleic anhydride and butadiene rubber. This product was fully commercialized at Dow, patented, and was also licensed to Arco.
  • Completed development of a styrene/maleic anhydride resin to replace casein as a pigment binder for paper coating. If commercialized would have resulted in more than $5 million profit/year.
  • Developed three polystyrene products based on anionic polymerization. First with unique balance of properties, second a utility grade from impure monomer (1/2 monomer cost), and third a conventional product with 25% less capital.

Technical Communications

  • Published 27 technical articles most with oral presentation. General Editor of the 250 page Styrene Polymers section of Wiley's Encyclopedia of Polymer Science and Engineering.
  • Patented 47 new inventions in the U.S. (most also patented in several foreign countries). Successfully defended a key patent from infringement.
  • Over 60 internal research reports at Dow that document carefully collected and interpreted data for others to build on.
  • Chaired several internal Dow technology teams, including process engineering guidelines team and Styron specifications task force.
  • Chaired Sessions at national meetings for both the American Institute of Chemical Engineers and the American Chemical Society.

Case Western Reserve University, OH, 1958 - 1962

  • Graduate Fellow (Glycerin Producers Association)

Honors & Publications

Credentials

Certifications

  • Professional Engineer, State of Michigan

Military

  • Veteran U.S. Marine Corps

Academic and Professional Affiliations

  • American Chemical Society - ACS

Publications and Patents

  • 27 Technical Publications
  • 47 U.S. patents

Education

  • Ph.D. Chemical Engineering, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH
  • B.S. Chemical Engineering, Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI
  • B.S. Chemistry, Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI
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