Catalyst Development and Process Data Analysis Expert
Technical Consultant #1672
- Catalyst development, (metal oxides, mixed oxides, reduced metals, zeolites, etc.), catalyst characterization and testing.
- Troubleshooting plant production issues in catalytic processes such as inadequate activation and premature catalyst deactivation.
- Every aspect of chemical production such as chemical process development, process implementation, process scale-up, plant data monitoring.
- Chemical engineering and data and analysis to identify opportunities for increasing productivity and product quality, and plant production support during trials and scale-ups.
- Unique distillation laboratory design experience.
Independent Consultant, 2009 - Present
Undisclosed Pharmaceutical Company, 2010 - 2017
Lab Supervisor - Principal Scientist, 2013 - 2017
Characterization Lab Supervisor, 2010 - 2013
- Improved team's collaboration with others (QC, Application, Technology) through active knowledge sharing which resulted in better products, test methods and job satisfaction.
- Provided customer support to solve customer concerns and disputes. Mentored customers, junior scientists and other global teams during such troubleshooting exercises.
- Researched and purchased several new instruments (Zeta analyzer, multiple automated TGAs, AutoChem, 3Flex, MOR fixture) which expanded the contributions of the characterization lab in designing new products and also testing existing products more thoroughly and efficiently.
- Cultivated excellent collaborative relationships with instrument vendors and their experts to maximize continuous learning during and after new instrument purchase.
- Changed how analytical labs measured and reported departmental KPIs monthly. The new format enhanced visualization, understanding and planning.
- Collaborated with global technical community on developmental projects to design characterization tests for new products. T-plot, CO-chemi, NO-chemi, imaging, etc. were utilized to develop unique structure/activity correlations for multiple products.
- Led collaborative projects to guide multiple QC sites in NA develop correct procedures and best practices. This effort standardized BET, MOR, EMOD, A-axis and CTE procedures and hence improved product quality and customer satisfaction.
- Facilitated Behavior Based Safety initiative in ECT, Wayne. Implemented programs to improve company's safety culture with noted success as seen in employee behavior.
- Led a six-sigma cross functional team to successful completion, which resulted in reduced process variability for automotive filters produced in Line 14 and hence reduction in rejects.
Air Products and Chemicals, Inc., Allentown, PA, Principal Development Engineer, 2005 - 2009
- Identified scope and methods to reduce production costs and also improve reliability for global ethyl amine plants.
- Identified ways to eliminate or reduce catalyst deactivation and reverse some of the deactivation, thereby decreasing catalyst cost in amino propyl diethanol amine (APDEA) production.
- Identified scope for increasing process yields and hence reduce costs for producing tertiary amine catalysts (TEDA).
- Demonstrated TEDA viability through laboratory experiments and cost analysis.
- Identified 2 catalyst deactivation mechanisms in APDEA process and eliminated one and reversed the other in order to get multiple catalyst use, resulting in potential annual cost savings near $1 million.
- Initiated and led the effort to create a database to document production history at a production site acquired by Air Products.
- Successfully implemented solutions which maximized output by analyzing process data and identifying similar reactors behaving very differently.
- Recommended proven process changes to purify raw material to improve catalyst life as well as process reliability.
- Identified relationship between impurities in lower cost ethanol and catalyst life for ethyl amines plants.
- Analyzed historical plant data and laboratory studies encompassing 20-25 years of TEDA production and research to understand what process changes are most likely to improve product yield.
- Evaluated and validated the recommendations in the laboratory.
Sunoco, Inc., Marcus Hook, PA, 1995 - 2002
Process Development Engineer, 1998 - 2002
- Identified scopes for improving existing phenol process technology licensed jointly by Sunoco and UOP with primary focus on distillation.
- Evaluated commercial benefit of proposed improvements using a combination of bench scale experiments, pilot scale engineering studies, process modeling and in-plant testing and identified avenues to increase reliability and reduce cost of all chemicals' operations.
- Identified relationship between lower feed temperature and levels of acetol in product phenol resulting in a purer phenol product.
- Designed and directed multi-craft group in building of "state of the art" pilot distillation laboratory utilized to facilitate research and development projects supporting newly acquired 100 million pound/year phenol plant.
- Developed a monitoring routine in ASPEN data acquisition system for all heat exchangers in the cumene plant.
- Enabled operators to detect heat exchanger fouling at an early stage and hence avoid sudden disruption in operation.
- Enabled Marcus Hook refinery to reduce the cost of Udex unit's extractor acid wash by approximately $100,000 annually by conducting laboratory analysis of the extractor deposit.
- Completed study to determine vapor pressure of mineral spirits enabling compliance with a pending EPA regulation.
- Developed effective working relationships with plant operations staff which allowed access to otherwise inaccessible data on phenol plant operations.
Research Engineer, 1995 - 1998
- Developed heterogeneous catalyst analogs of Sunoco's patented homogeneous catalyst system.
- Provided physical and chemical characterizations of catalysts to identify key properties governing catalyst activity and selectivity.
- Screened catalysts using gas phase plug flow reactors with on-line analysis.
- Performed reactor data analysis by incorporating lotus macros for detailed calculation of conversion, selectivity, yield, turnover number and generated data summary table.
- Performed preliminary engineering economic calculations for determining process viability and profitability.
- Invented a novel technique to synthesize stable supported polyoxometallate catalysts and received a patent.
- Identified pore structure to be a major determinant in catalyst activity and selectivity and invented methods to optimize that.
- Successfully troubleshot a major reactor and catalyst.
Honors & Publications
- Six-Sigma certification
Academic and Professional Affiliations
- North American Catalysis Society
- Philadelphia Catalysis Club
Publications and Patents
- 5 publications
- 8 presentations
- 7 patents
- Ph.D. Chemical Engineering, The University of Akron, OH
- M.S. Chemical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kanpur, India
- B.S. Chemical Engineering, Jadavpur University, Calcutta, India