Materials.Business Weekly ⚙️
May 11, 2021
Quote of the week: .''New technologies will dramatically change the nature of work across all industries and occupations.” — Klaus Schwab (Germany, 1938, founder and executive chairman of the World Economic Forum).
From The Editor's Corner
THE TRANSITION TOWARDS A WORLD OF NEW MATERIALS BIZ OPPORTUNITIES
The Post-Globalization times
Many rulers and business decision-makers fail to notice that the arisen challenges with the coronavirus crisis are unique. They are trying to return to the status quo ante. But it is vital to show all the leaders that the global society has experienced a collective challenge never faced by whole humanity before. That today the correct answers are unconventional. Required responses must be oriented towards a true “New Normal” instead of the old one. A situation in which we must match the new consciousness of our global fragility. A global economic recovery is a priority but considering some special and equally important issues according to the actual situation: An inclusive, equitable, and climate-centric economy recovery, a just retrieval. The pathway to the post-recovery decade and the arriving “Post-Globalization Era,” understood as a globalized economy in a hyper-connected and equalitarian society. A complex, kaleidoscopic situation, asking for complex solutions. Potpourris of multidisciplinary pieces of knowledge acting together. Most of the answers are based on the availability of emerging technologies brought by the Fourth Industrial Revolution but inclusively managed. Many of them concerning materials and asset integrity.
The energy transition is a priority
The last version of the Sustainability Development Goals – SDGs -established by the United Nations in 2015-have been premonitory of the post-COVID-19 concerns. The SDGs can be seen as a good road map for social, economic, and environmental achievements in search of a peaceful future among ourselves and with nature. Watching on the SDG, some of them are directly associable with energy poverty. Besides, SDGs are interconnected, and energy poverty is the linkage. Heating and cooking are responsible for a millennial chain of difficulties starting with deforestation and following with climate change, health problems, biodiversity loss, forced migration, finishing with the current global warming. New sources and better ways of energy handling are crucial in the context of post-globalization. New and improved management of materials is necessary. Before, we analyzed some of the options of Corrosionists in front of three of the SDGs: “Quality education,” “Clean water and sanitation,” and “Affordable and clean energy.” But life is complex, and “No poverty,” “Zero hunger,” “Good health and well-being,” etc., are all interconnected, and energy transition is a general platform for attending all of them. In addition, the energy sector accounts for two-thirds of global carbon emissions, and yearly deaths by air pollutions are around seven million (currently, the total deaths by COVID-19 worldwide are less than a half). As a result, energy transition is more urgent than ever. A sample of required acceleration is happening with the hydrogen energization. For some decades, trends showed that developments could accomplish the technology of H₂ as an energy source around 2050. However, recent news indicates that new requirements have to advance the target for about 20 years. The energy transition is becoming a common concern, but advances until now are slow. Today, the situation has changed. Some of the countries and many companies are getting to the starting line of the competition for all the opportunities that may emerge solving the challenges of energy switching. A big deal concerning green technologies. In other words, an incredible range of biz opportunities, including novelties about materials, corrosion processes, anticorrosive measurements, and asset integrity management.
What does the energy transition mean?
Worldwide sources of electricity in 2019 were coal (36%), natural gas (23%), hydroelectric power (16%), nuclear energy (10%), wind (5%), solar (3%), biomass (3%), oil (3%), and others (1%). 73% of the Indian and 65% of the Chinese electricity was produced by coal. Besides, the estimated annual growth of the global electricity generation over the next decades is about 2.5%. These figures indicate that CO₂ emissions will be a concern for years to come. However, the possibilities of a transition towards a truly green basket of energy sources are feasible. According to Prof. Mark Z. Jacobson of the Stanford University, it is possible to electrify everything using wind, water, and solar power. However, most of the current technologies still are expensive. Furthermore, some of them face challenges of sustainability. Starting point enabling energy transition is the existing infrastructure, which is partially functional. But the problem is that the valuable infrastructure is old, and the rest is obsolete. Infrastructure concerns the two sides of the business, offer & demand. Both are being required to undergo significant transformations that respond to those great demands mentioned above. Examples of the issues that have been considered are:
o Sources of energy: Non-conventional, renewable, greener (low carbon energies).
● Fission: Low-scale reactors.
● Fusion: Modular reactors, supply on demand.
▪ Blue & green.
● Solar, on and floating offshore (higher efficiency, lower cost, new designs, etc.).
● Wind, on and offshore.
▪ Hydraulic: Micro centrals.
o Storage: Long-term at low cost.
▪ Mechanical: Hydraulic, pneumatic, etc.
o Transmission & distribution.
▪ High-voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission systems.
▪ Smart grids.
▪ Self-generation by homes and buildings.
▪ Virtual power plants.
▪ Transportation (electric cars, aviation, ships) manufacturing (steel, cement, chemicals, etc.), agriculture, ICT, mining, etc.
▪ Homes and buildings: Inductive stoves, radiation heating systems, electric heat pumps, illumination, bioclimatic designs, etc.
▪ Higher efficiency: Architecture, smart cities, illumination (light-emitting diodes), heating, refrigeration, ventilation, isolation, conductivity, etc.
▪ Carbon dioxide sequestration, conversion, usage, and storage – CCUS.
The above partial list of possibilities and requirements quickly shows that the materials and asset integrity will play a bottom role in such an energy transition. A proper selection of current engineering material, but also new ones, will be required for handling known and new aggressive conditions: Different corrosives; higher temperatures and pressures; new materials for better conductivity and isolation; higher resistant materials; lighter or with better strength/weight ratio materials; new manufacturing processes; etc. In brief, significant challenges for materials resistance and a plethora of materials biz opportunities.
Invest, Invent, and innovate
Looking through the whole panorama above described, it is possible to say that the Triple I (Invest-Invent-Innovate) is the key to a profound, faster, and cheaper transition. Money is critical to the implementation of existing technologies and research into new ones. Sustainability doesn’t mean sacrifice, and many green stock strategies offer good returns to the investors, most of which are related to the energy transition. Most advanced economies are also betting. For instance, the European Union is planning to increase lot the offshore energy production, with an estimated investment of USD $960.000 million. For its part, the Biden administration recognizes that every year of delay in implementing a national wind energy program cost hundreds of millions of dollars. Consequently, they conceive a program to avoid 78 million tons of CO₂ (equivalent to taking 17 million cars off the road for a year) and creating 44.000 employees in the offshore wind sector.
However, patenting as a measure of invention and innovation demonstrates that the pace of new practical knowledge is not sufficient to meet current expectations in terms of the energy transition. Most of the new required technologies about offer and demand, incremental improvements on the current technologies or radical changes, are just budding, and the road to their presence in the market may take decades. Here, it is essential to remember the urgency and the global nature of the energy transition challenge. A summary of basic recommendations aimed at accelerating the pace of the required innovation includes:
● Acceleration of the pace of R&D with investment and flow of knowledge, under a complex and multidisciplinary perspective.
● Strengthening of the Triple Helix Industry-Government-Academy collaboration on the specific requirements, including small and large-scale initiatives.
● International collaborative and synergic networking at several levels.
Ultimately, a world of shinny suggestions and opportunities for material engineers, Corrosionists, and all the people in charge of caring for materials and assets in the times to come.
Remember: Protection of materials and equipment is a profitable business!
Prof. Carlos Arroyave, Ph.D. Editor.
Materials Biz News
Decommissioning is an excellent duty for Corrosionists in the Circular Economy framework
The European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) announced the end of a decommissioning project and the forensic analysis of a tidal energy tripod. The structure had been submerged for about 11 years, operating with two tidal turbines. Final lessons have provided feedback on decommissioning management. Also, tips for design, installation, performance, and maintenance, oriented to minimize risks in the offshore renewable industry. Especially risks regarding topics like metallurgic defects, biofouling, and corrosion of foundations.
Ideal recycling of polymers
A collaborative group of researchers from Austria, the USA, China, and Denmark, has reported positive results about the infinite recycling of a new generation polymer, the polydiketoenamine (PDK). The experiments were done trying chemical depolymerization in strong acid under ambient conditions. According to the researchers, “the cost of producing virgin PDK resin using unoptimized processes is ~30-fold higher than recycling them, and the cost of recycled PDK resin ($1.5 kg⁻¹) is on par with PET and HDPE, and below that of polyurethanes. Virgin resin production is carbon intensive (86 kg CO₂e kg⁻¹), while chemical recycling emits only 2 kg CO₂e kg⁻¹. This cost and emissions disparity provides a strong incentive to recover and recycle future polymer waste.”
Improving gadgets for more accessible application of augmented/virtual reality in the industry
Campfire3d has raised USD $8 million to launch a new AR/VR headset and console. With these devices is possible to have a holographic projection of an object, using a single headset without the obstruction of the peripheral vision, a graphic processing unit running with Windows 10 and easily connected to a laptop, and intuitive control of the console by an attachment to the iOS or Android phone. Consequently, the Campfire 3D pack lets working meetings around a CAD/3D model of any object or product and handles it. The package is valid, e.g., for design purposes, assessment of geometries, product exhibition, etc., in a very flexible way.
Position: Senior Research Fellow
Seeker: Curtin Corrosion Center, Curtin University
Location: Bentley, Greater Perth, Western Australia
The basic profile of the candidate:
● Education: Ph.D. in materials/corrosion science or mechanical engineering.
● Experience: Research on physical metallurgy and alloy manufacturing, mechanical testing (tensile, impact, CTOD, etc.) of metals and non-metals, fracture mechanics and fatigue, corrosion and electrochemistry, or microscopy and materials characterization techniques.
● Bonus: Engineering polymers, teaching experience, programming, and modeling.
Job description: Curtin Corrosion Centre is seeking a Senior Research Fellow developing project leadership in environmentally assisted cracking research and in advanced materials characterization using Curtin’s state-of-the-art facilities. Also, you will be supervising HDR students and seeking competitive government research funding opportunities, and last but not least, supporting the Curtin corrosion Centre’s engagement and outreach activities.
Position: Faculty Position in Materials Technology
Seeker: Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
Location: Hong Kong
The basic profile of the candidate:
● Education: Ph.D. in mechanical engineering, materials science, or related engineering fields.
● Experience: A recognized pertinent academic, research, or industrial experience.
● Bonus: Combined experimental and computational/theoretical approaches in multidisciplinary environments.
Job description: The Department is looking for an outstanding candidate who will be expected to establish an externally-funded research program, contribute to undergraduate and graduate teaching, and collaborate with colleagues across the University.
Position: Design patent examiner and patent examiner
Seeker: United States Patent & Trademark Office
Location: Alexandria, Virginia, USA
The basic profile of the candidate:
● Education: Nearly graduates and professionals in graphic design/art and engineers (biomedical, computer, electrical, and mechanical engineering)
● Experience: 2 - 4 years of designing experience in the field of industrial design, product design.
● Skills: Ability to think analytically and perform detailed analysis. Ability to coordinate multiple projects at one time and meet defined timelines.
Job description: Patent examiners are skilled engineers and scientists who work closely with entrepreneurs to process their patent applications and determine whether a patent can be granted. A Design Patent Examiner (PE) performs work in examining applications for United States patents about the form, appearance, and ornamentation of objects. The incumbent uses professional knowledge of designs and practices to evaluate the invention claimed in each patent application. The incumbent uses a broad understanding of past and current developments in design to uncover previous inventions, as represented by domestic and foreign patents, supply catalogs, style books, etc.
Networking & Knowledge Exchange
In Spanish. The Colombian Association of Corrosion Engineers (AMPP Section Colombia) offers a level 3 cathodic protection technologist course to prepare yourself for the virtual exam CP3 - Cathodic Protection Technologist. It is based on the previous level CP2 cathodic protection technologist with a strong focus on data interpretation, repair, and mitigation of problems that may occur for both galvanized and impressed current systems. The course is presented in a lecture, discussion and practice format, class experiments, and group exercises. Subjects include cathodic protection theory and criteria, fundamentals of calculation design (circuit resistances, system capacity and life, number of anodes, voltage handling). The exams will be in Spanish, and you can schedule them from your location.
Dates: May 24th to 28th of 2021.
Improving materials specification. Virtual
A course organized by ASM International. It is offered by Prof. Sunniva R. Collins, Ph.D., from the University of Cleveland. This course involves learning the best practices for materials specifications, including composition, heat treatment, mechanical properties, and test methods for determining acceptance criteria.
Dates: May 17th, 19th, 24th, and 26th, and Jun 02nd, 2021.
Time: 16:00 – 18:00 EST (GMT – 5).
Corrosion and Protection of Materials. Virtual
For Portuguese speakers. The event is organized by the Technical Division of Protection and Corrosion of Materials of the Portuguese Society of Materials. This course is aimed at professionals who intend to deepen their knowledge and who work or will work in the field of corrosion and protection of materials. It is organized into modules, according to a sequential development and with a total duration of 20 hours. Some of the topics will be:
Corrosion costs and fundamentals
Types of corrosion and corrosion in different media
● Techniques for prevention and protection of materials
● Atmospheric corrosivity and durability of materials
● The importance of EN ISO 12944
● Paints and anticorrosive protection by painting
Dates: May 26th, 27th, 28th, and 31st, and Jun 01st - 02nd, 2021.
On behalf of the International Corrosion Council (https://icc-net.org/), the Brazilian Association of Corrosion – ABRACO (https://abraco.org.br/) is organizing the next International Corrosion Congress. In this opportunity, the ICC will be held together with the most representative Brazilian corrosion and anticorrosion event – INTERCORR. Materials.Business Newsletter recommends the attendance of all the community of Corrosionists worldwide in the 21st ICC. It will be a unique, innovative summit.
Dates: Tuesday to Friday, July 20th – 23rd, 2021.