By: Bill Bregar
March 12, 2013
NEWTOWN, CONN. — Benny Freeman, the Robert B. Curran Centennial Chair in Chemical Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin, will receive the Society of Plastics Engineers' International Award, its top honor, during Antec 2013.
Antec, SPE's annual technical conference, will be held April 22-24 in Cincinnati. Award winners will be honored during the SPE Celebrates Banquet on Sunday April 21. SPE is based in Newtown.
SPE said Freeman has made important contributions in engineering, research, service and education involving polymer membranes for low-energy gas and liquid separations.
Freeman joined the UT Austin faculty in 2002. He came from North Carolina State University. In 2009, he formed a startup company in Austin, called Advanced Hydro Inc. The company supplies high-performance membranes and pre-treatment processes for purifying and reclaiming oil- and gas-related wastewater, and the desalination of brackish groundwater or seawater for drinking or industrial use.
Freeman's research focuses on polymers and polymer-based composite materials, with emphasis on the transport of small molecules in polymers. He earned a bachelor's degree in chemical engineering from North Carolina State University and a doctorate in chemical engineering from the University of California at Berkeley
Freeman won the American Chemical Society's Roy W. Tess Award in Coatings.
SPE announced these other awards for Antec:
Business Management Award
Tim Taylor of Chevron Phillips Chemical Co.'s vice president of commercial, marketing, transportation and business development at Phillips 66, will receive the Business Management Award.
Taylor, a chemical engineer, has more than 35 years of experience in the chemical, oil and gas industries. He was chief operating officer at Chevron Phillips before moving to his current role.
He began his chemical industry career at Eastman Chemical. He joined the Plastics Division of Phillips Petroleum Co. in 1980. From 1990 to 1992 he was president of Phillips Recycling Co. in Tulsa, OK. He moved to Houston to manage marketing of the company's K-resin.
In 1993, he as named president of Phillips Pipeline Co., and he returned to chemicals and plastics two years later. He held management positions prior to the merger of the chemicals operations of Phillips and Chevron Corp.
Taylor earned a bachelor's degree in chemical engineering from Kansas State University.
Robert Lochhead, who chairs the Department of Polymer Science at the University of Southern Mississippi, has won SPE's Education Award.
He serves as principal investigator of the National Science Foundation's Multinational Partnership to Incite Innovation and is director of the School of Polymers and High Performance Materials at USM.
Before joining the university in 1990, Lochhead's industrial career spanned 25 years at ICI Nobel, Unilever Research and BFGoodrich's Specialty Polymer and Chemicals Division.
He has written 300 scientific papers and holds 22 patents, some for polymers used in topical delivery of therapeutics and cosmetics. His current research focuses on the development the global sharing of robotic equipment, through a cyberinfrastructure.
Research/Engineering Technology Award
Robert Gallucci, the chief scientist with Sabic Innovation Plastics in Mount Vernon, Ind., will receive the Research/Engineering Technology Award.
In his 36-year plastics career, he has developed many new thermoplastic products, often using extruder chemistry and polymer blend compatibilization.
Gallucci has contributed to cumulative product sales of more than $2 billion. He has written 39 technical papers, including 23 at Antecs, and contributed to three books.
He holds more than 100 U.S. patents with 132 different co-inventors, including Lexan polycarbonate inventor Dan Fox.
Gallucci, a chemist, has been a member of SPE since 1985.