Guest Blog: Account from Asia Pacific on the impact of the coronavirus outbreak on chemical engineers in the region

In today’s guest blog, chemical engineer David Platts tells us how he has been working to share knowledge to support chemical engineers in his region during the coronavirus outbreak.

DSCF5083Name: David Platts

Job title and organisation: NZ based Food Industry Consultant (semi-retired)

IChemE role: Member of the Learned Society Committee and Subject Area Lead Food

 

 In discussions with IChemE members in my region, it was evident that although much information published globally was centred on the major economic centres, we too had interesting stories to share regarding our response to the COVID-19 pandemic in Asia Pacific.

Working with the country chairs in Australia and New Zealand, and fellow Learned Society Committee member Alexandra Meldrum, a series of short webinars was planned highlighting how we were navigating the myriad of the challenges brought about by pandemic.

We asked two subject specialists to join us for the first webinar on 23 March. Both presenters shared some thought-provoking content which was extremely relevant to current events, but also challenged us to carefully consider future actions post the pandemic.

Trish Kerin, Director of the IChemE Safety Centre, gave a presentation titled “Decision Making in a Crisis”. Clearly this topic was of much interest to the delegates as we are indeed in a crisis and, for many, this provides many challenges to leadership. A key aspect that I took from the talk was that good leaders need to develop a well-stocked bank account of trust with the people they are leading. This point, I suggest, is highlighted by some of the differing global leadership styles that we are witnessing in many countries.

The second presentation was by Kennie Tsui, Principal Analyst at the New Climate Commission and board member of Engineering New Zealand. Kennie talked in depth about climate change issues going forward. Kennie gave us a vision of what could happen post COVID-19 if we let the brakes off too quickly, referencing the bounce back in emissions following the global financial crisis of 2008. We have a decision to make, follow a new path that leads to meeting our goals for emissions reductions or accelerate those emissions thereby making the challenges even more difficult. A direction that we need to carefully manage – informed and well communicated decisions are critical.

We do hope that those who viewed the presentations found them valuable. If you missed the webinar it can be viewed on the IChemE Safety Centre YouTube channel here.

For the future, please keep your eye open for more webinars as we would like to expand this initiative to the wider Asia Pacific region with more varied content. If you have stories to share, please contact us via the regional members portals for New Zealand and Australia. We would love to hear from you.

 

For more information on how IChemE is responding to the coronavirus outbreak, please visit our Coronavirus Information Hub.

‘Changing communities. Changing lives’ – Marking Volunteers Week in Australia

As a membership organisation that is led by members, supports members and serves society, volunteers are the lifeblood of the Institution.

Without our member volunteers, we simply couldn’t fulfil our obligations as a qualifying body or a learned society. Their enthusiasm and drive to help fellow members, the chemical engineering community and wider society is palpable.

Continue reading ‘Changing communities. Changing lives’ – Marking Volunteers Week in Australia

Training the future bioprocess leaders – IChemE Training and Development Award Winner 2019

Established 20 years ago, University College London (UCL) launched the Bioprocess Engineering Leadership Centre to train the next generation of leaders for the bioprocess industry.

For this, they were presented with the Training and Development Award at the IChemE Global Awards 2019.

Many of the projects are in collaboration with the pharma and biotech industries. Doctoral students primarily focus on problems that look into developing new pharmaceutical medicines and how they can reach the patients that need them.

In total, the Bioprocess Engineering Leadership Centre has seen more than 200 Engineering Doctorate graduates become leaders in the field. Some have even created their own spin-out companies from this programme, raising multi-million-pound investments for the industry and in return furthering the work in the bioprocess industry.

Proud to be recognised for their achievements, here are Gary Lye and Frank Baganz from UCL talking about the project:

Have you got a training scheme worthy of an IChemE Global Award 2020? Nominations are open until 26 June 2020.

Find out more and enter online at: www.icheme.org/awards

This video was produced by CMA Video.

New device allows for controlled medicine release – IChemE Innovative Product & Pharma Award Winners 2019

It was double celebrations for Micropore Technologies, who won in both the Innovative Product and Pharma categories at the IChemE Global Awards 2019 for their project Membrane Emulsification Finally Come of Age.

The team at Micropore Technologies have designed and developed a device (AXF-7), that will allow drugs with complex molecules to be delivered through a standard size needle and released in the body at a controlled rate, as well as making it easier for the patient to administer the drug themselves.

Find out more about the project in this video:

If you have a project demonstrating the best in process or technology in the pharmaceutical sector, why not enter the IChemE Global Awards 2020?

Entries are now open until 26 June 2020. Visit: https://www.icheme.org/globalawards

This video was produced by CMA Video.

Challenging ‘change’ and improving process safety – IChemE Process Safety Award Winner 2019

ExxonMobil was the winner of the Process Safety category at the IChemE Global Awards 2019, for their project Delta HAZOP.

With process safety at the heart of all their decisions,  ExxonMobil put in place the Delta HAZOP programme, which builds upon the original ICI HAZOP process used to design and build inherently safe facilities.

In addition, ExxonMobil also use the IChemE Loss Prevention Bulletin to understand the key learnings from horrific events such as the chemical explosion in Bhopal, India.

Watch this video to find out more about this project:

Do you have an award-worthy process safety project that you’d like to enter in the IChemE Global Awards 2020? Find out more and submit your entry by 26 June 2020 at: www.icheme.org/awards

This video was produced by CMA Video.

GUEST BLOG: Chemical engineers and the diagnostics challenge

In today’s guest blog, chemical engineer Al Edwards discusses how chemical engineers are responding to the diagnostics challenge that has arisen to support the response to the coronavirus pandemic. Continue reading GUEST BLOG: Chemical engineers and the diagnostics challenge

GUEST BLOG: Key lessons from CPD sampling

In today’s guest blog, Chartered Chemical Engineer and IChemE Fellow Richard Cousins, explains a recent member continuing professional development (CPD) sampling exercise undertaken by IChemE.

A member of IChemE’s Professional Formation Forum and a CPD Assessor Panel Lead, he reviews the key lessons from the sampling exercise, and what comes next.

Continue reading GUEST BLOG: Key lessons from CPD sampling