Can you discuss your mission for educating the industry on non-metallics?
My involvement has largely been through NACE and I’ve been actively engaged in the non-metallic materials in construction at NACE. My motivation to educate the industry is that there is a lot of opportunity for building reliable cost effective and cost saving equipment using these non-metallic materials – particularly FRP composites and laminates. I also find that in the project engineering/process engineering world of the chemical processing industry, from what I’ve seen, there’s not a lot of knowledge about how these materials behave, what they’re good for and how they work. So it’s a chance to educate people on what they can do.
Where do you see the future for composites in the chemical processing industry?
I expect the use of composites to grow but I think there’s a lack of recognition and a dependence on alloy materials. Because of the limitations of those materials, there’s an opportunity for an expanded use of composites. Going to dual laminate structures, you can continue to expand the use and go beyond what FRP alone can handle. But I think it will have to come by recognition from people in the chemical processing industry and how useful these materials are. FRP composites and dual laminate materials are being used in the chemical processing industry but there’s not a broad based recognition of when you might consider these materials instead of an alloy. Not knowing when to make that switch from alloy to a non-metallic material goes hand-in-hand with the need to educate the industry.
What is your role at BASF?
BASF under-utilizes composites – FRP and dual laminates – in my opinion. And one of my roles within the company is to help people recognize that these materials can be advantageous. My title is corrosion specialist; I solve corrosion problems. These materials are one of my favorite tools for solving corrosion problems. Because I find them to be a very effective tool, you can say I champion the use of those materials.
Your presentation at the Chemical Processing Symposium will focus on dual laminates. What do you hope attendees will take away from your presentation?
My presentation is more of a survey about the use and life cycle behaviors of dual laminates in very tough chemical environments. What we can see from this and what it shows is an idea of what to expect with the equipment ages and it gives an idea of the variety of materials these systems can handle. I’m hoping that people gain some confident that these materials can give them long reliable service and that they can handle a variety of aggressive chemical environments.