The Best Process Innovation category gives entrants a chance to show how innovative they are in the fundamental areas of new process development and process improvement - vital areas of innovation underlying better use of energy and raw materials, improved economics, safer performance and lower environmental impact.
THIS YEAR'S WINNER:
Interline 9001 is an advanced coating system for ship’s cargo tanks which in 2016 enabled AkzoNobel to take a greater than half share of total global new-build volume. The coating is based on patented BiModal technology, formulated at lower stoichiometry than conventional epoxy amine systems. It undergoes initial conventional cure at room temperature before being subjected to a high temperature post-cure which induces homopolymerisation of unreacted epoxy groups in the presence of a catalyst. This delivers very high conversion and results in a very highly cross-linked network which is the basis of the step change in chemical resistance performance of Interline 9001. The superior performance of Interline 9001 can be attributed to very low, often zero, cargo absorption which is significantly lower than comparable products. It is also recognised as a sustainable coating solution due to the unique easy-clean properties and performance longevity. Interline 9001 is thus a significant advance in coatings technology for cargo tanks.
2016 - Dow Chemical - Canvera polyolefin dispersions for food and beverage metal can coatings
2015 - AkzoNobel - lntersleek 1100SR patented anti-slime release coating for ships hulls
2014 - Solvay - Emana polyamide fibre that emits far-infrared radiation
The Best Product Innovation category gives entrants a chance to show how innovative they are in the traditional but still vital area of product innovation.
THIS YEAR'S WINNER:
The Dow fluidized catalytic dehydrogenation (FCDh) process
Dow Chemical has developed fluid catalytic dehydrogenation (FCDh) technology to improve production of propylene from abundant US shale gas resources by increasing selectivity. The new technology is based on commercialised fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) technology and uses a proprietary catalyst and design to achieve 45% propane conversion at 93 mol% selectivity to propylene. The system’s simplicity enables >20% capital savings and reduces energy requirements. FCDh can also be easily integrated into existing or new ethylene crackers enabling increased production or tailoring the facility for the desired amount of ethylene and propylene production. Additionally, the technology can be used in new or retrofitted ethylbenzene-to-styrene dehydrogenation facilities, butane to butene, or isobutane to isobutene plants. C4 dehydrogenation units can be integrated into refineries to upgrade butane or isobutane for use in the alkylation section to produce alkylate.
2016 - Siluria Technologies - Oxidative coupling of methane
2015 - No award made
2014 - Honeywell UOP/INEOS/Total - Advanced methanol-to-olefins process
The Best Innovation by a SME category gives SMEs, that great source and reservoir of innovation, a chance to shine.
THIS YEAR'S WINNER:
GENO BG, a more natural, sustainable way to make butylene glycol
US-based Genomatica has taken a well-known chemical - 1,3-butylene glycol (BG) - and developed a better way to make it, biologically, via fermentation of common sugars. The result, GENO BG, provides a high-quality, natural and sustainably-sourced solution that has the potential for high appeal in cosmetics and as a high-quality product for industrial uses. The GENO BG process contrasts with the conventional means of making BG starting with acetaldehyde, which is toxic, an irritant and a carcinogen. GENO BG also enables new markets in sports drinks and medical supplements. Only the (R)-enantiomer of BG is proven safe and effective for people, and by using bioengineering to selectively produce a “pure R” BG, Genomatica reduces production costs more than ten-fold compared to purifying petroleum-derived BG, enabling it to be an affordable, everyday supplement. Genomatica’s innovations have the potential for significant industry impact.
2016 - Compact Membrane Systems - Membrane separation of olefins and paraffins
2015 - Cella Energy - Solid hydrogen
2014 - Argex Titanium – Third-generation process to manufacture titanium dioxide
The chemical industry and innovative can play an important role in addressing many of today's environmental concerns, including global warming, pollution, recycling, water supply security and nutrition. The category is designed to recognise those companies that have incorporated the ideas of environmental performance and sustainability into their innovation in the areas of product and process developments and approach to business overall.
Entries might include improved manufacturing processes or products, with reduced environmental impact, or new products that tackle the issues above. They should show a distinct benefit to the environment and to the sustainability of the company and its customers.
THIS YEAR'S WINNER:
From filthy trash to green renewable products: Driving the circular economy by converting waste to everyday goods
Enerkem is setting a new standard in smart waste management. By using municipal solid waste as a feedstock instead of fossil- or crop-based products and recycling the carbon contained in trash to produce renewable chemicals and biofuels, Enerkem’s proprietary technology provides a cost-effective, sustainable alternative to the challenges associated with waste disposal for communities all around the world. Enerkem’s solution helps accelerate advances toward a circular economy where waste becomes a resource to make everyday products greener. It equally answers the question of how to dispose of rapidly accumulating non-recyclable and non-compostable garbage, while preventing greenhouse gas emissions from waste buried in landfills, and creating value-added products from otherwise useless trash.
2016 - Covestro and CAT Catalytic Center RWTH Aachen - Use of carbon dioxide in the production of plastics
2015 - Global Green Products - Fresh water conservation in the Bakken
2014 - Huntsman Textile Effects - Revolutionary dyes confront textile industry sustainability challenges