Saturday, October 9, 2010

Science vs. Engineering

My current project uses some proprietary technology that could be a game changer for the gas-to-liquids business. The developers and our Chem Engineers can talk for hours about the processes taking place within their "black box", endlessly discussing the chemical minutia involved. But, somebody has to take this thing and put it in a real world environment and actually produce a saleable product.

I quickly realized that the folks in Ohio had not thought about those issues. What are the foundation requirements, what are the allowable loads on the flanges, what is the thermal growth, what utilities do I need to support it, how do we do an Emergency Shutdown......Answers to these questions are needed before it can go commercial and I'll be working on those along with the issues of doing construction in a Brazilian jungle.

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