US regulators clear way for Dow-DuPont merger | Oil prices still weak as US drilling activity keeps surging | Actelion purchased by J&J, spins out Idorsia
June 20, 2017
AICHE SmartBrief
Business and technology news exclusively for chemical engineers
Business Update
US regulators clear way for Dow-DuPont merger
US antitrust regulators have approved DuPont and Dow Chemical's proposed $130 billion merger as long as they divest certain assets, including some crop-protection products. Dow has also agreed to sell its acid copolymers and ionomers unit.
Reuters (6/15) 
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Oil prices still weak as US drilling activity keeps surging
(Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
Brent and West Texas Intermediate futures rose slightly on Monday to $47.54 and $44.89 per barrel respectively as US producers continued to add rigs last week and signs showed that oil demand growth is slowing down. Brent and WTI prices have fallen by around 13% since OPEC agreed to extend the production cuts in late May.
Reuters (6/19) 
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Actelion purchased by J&J, spins out Idorsia
Johnson & Johnson's Janssen Pharmaceutical completed its Actelion acquisition for $30 billion in cash. Actelion spun off Idorsia after the acquisition, which has ongoing trials of aprocitentan, or ACT-541468, for chronic insomnia, clazosentan for vasospasm related to aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage and cenerimod for lupus.
Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (6/16) 
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Other News
The EKATO Hydrogenation Pilot Plant
EKATO has recently opened a new hydrogenation pilot plant; the EKATO Hydrogenation Test Center is located at our headquarters in Schopfheim, Germany. The Research Center was established within a year with an investment expenditure of €2 million. Learn More.
Chemical Technology News
Molecular electronics get help from graphene
Molecular electronic devices can have their functionality tuned with the use of graphene, say researchers at the University of Bern and the National Physical Laboratory. Potential applications include energy conversion and storage, flexible electronics and molecular sensing.
New Electronics (6/12) 
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AIChE & CCPS members receive an exclusive 35% off all Wiley books!
By partnering with Wiley since 2005, AIChE and CCPS are able to serve members with the most up-to-date and trusted resources in chemical engineering. Learn more.
Energy, Sustainability & Safety
ExxonMobil breakthrough could spur broad commercialization of algae-based biofuels
A new development from ExxonMobil and scientist J. Craig Venter could spur broad commercialization of algae-based biofuels. Through advanced cell engineering, they more than doubled the fatty lipids in an algae strain, and the technique can be used on other types of algae as well.
Bloomberg (6/19) 
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Other News
White Paper: Hazardous Area Classification Compliance – Focus on Communication
A key element of process electrical safety is assigning a proper hazardous area classification (HAC) and communicating it to affected individuals. Steps are shown from the HAC assessment through HAC compliance remediation plan. A team approach can increase communication flow and make HAC compliance a shared responsibility. Download white paper.
Biological Engineering & Pharmaceuticals
Study evaluates efficacy of bio-printed heart patches for blood flow delivery
Two bio-printed heart patches made from endothelial cells were developed by scientists, one designed with a specific architecture and the other simply injectable, without any organizational structure, to determine which patch form would provide enhanced blood flow. The patch that had a pre-organized architecture was instrumental in forming new blood vessels that allowed for sufficient blood delivery to the heart, according to research published in the journal Nature Biomedical Engineering.
Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (6/14) 
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Materials & Nanotechnology
New 3D-printing technique holds promise for wearable devices
New wearable electronic devices may be a step closer with a form of 3D printing developed by a team of South Korean scientists. The 3D-printing technology includes a new nozzle that can print highly conductive carbon nanotubes.
The Korea Herald (Seoul) (6/12) 
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Education & Government Update
EPA seeks to halt Obama-era methane rules for 2 years
The Environmental Protection Agency has proposed extending its suspension of Obama-era standards on methane emissions from oil and natural gas operations from 90 days to two years while it reviews the regulation. "Under the proposal, sources would not need to comply with these requirements while the stay is in effect," the EPA said.
Reuters (6/13) 
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EPA plans guidance to prevent chemical backlogs
The Environmental Protection Agency plans to devote resources, including a "points to consider" document for companies, so that a backlog of chemical reviews doesn't recur, said Jeffery Morris, director of EPA's Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics.
Bloomberg BNA (subscription required) (6/14) 
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Institute News
This Thursday: Virtual section focuses on smart manufacturing
This Thursday, June 22, at 9 p.m. EDT, AIChE's Virtual Local Section will hold an online meeting with the theme "Integrating Operations and Information Technology Systems and the Practice of Smart Manufacturing." Led by Jim Davis, vice provost, information technology, and chief academic technology officer at UCLA; co-founder of the Smart Manufacturing Leadership Coalition; and leader of DOE's Clean Energy Smart Manufacturing Innovation Manufacturing USA Institute, the session will cover the application of advanced sensors, controls platforms, and modeling in manufacturing operations. Find out more.
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New CCPS book targets combustible dust hazards
AIChE's Center for Chemical Process Safety, in partnership with Wiley, has just published "Guidelines for Combustible Dust Hazard Analysis." The book covers both compliance-based and risk-based approaches to assessing processes that handle combustible solids. AIChE members receive a 35% discount on this and other titles. Read more.
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Career Focus
Salary isn't the only thing you can negotiate
If an employer won't adjust your salary, try negotiating a more flexible work schedule or a different job title, writes Stacey Lastoe. You can also lobby for increased travel or professional development opportunities.
The Muse (6/15) 
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Petrochemical Olefins Complex Process Engineer
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