Donald Baird, a chemical engineering professor at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, won the Society of Plastics Engineers' top honor, the International Award, for lifetime achievements in research and teaching in polymer rheology, processing and composites.
SPE also presented the Education Award to Robert Malloy at the University of Massachusetts at Lowell during the Plastics Hall of Fame banquet June 22, the first day of NPE2009. That marked the first time SPE's annual conference, Antec, and NPE were held at the same time.
The day before, SPE handed out its President's Cup and named honored-service members and fellows.
Baird and Malloy both gave short speeches at the Plastics Hall of Fame event, held at McCormick Place West.
I'm honored and I'll cherish this award for the rest of my career, said Baird, the Harry C. Wyatt Professor of chemical engineering at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Va. He also is co-director of its Center for Composite Materials and Structures.
He was one of the first engineers to study the rheological behavior of liquid-crystal polymers. SPE said his work on the transient extensional rheology of LCPs is basically the only data ever reported for these materials.
Building on that research, Baird developed thermoplastic composites reinforced with thermotropic LCPs, then concentrated on learning how to produce microcomposites to create useful materials.
Baird now is developing compression moldable materials that are highly conductive, to form bipolar plates for fuel cells.
Through his career, Baird has written more than 200 published works, 10 book chapters and the textbook Polymer Processing and Design.
Malloy chairs the Plastics Engineering Department at UMass Lowell, one of the top programs for plastics. SPE said Malloy is responsible for the rebirth of the department in Lowell, Mass., which has significantly upgraded research facilities and classrooms.
Malloy was involved with the Center of High Rate Nanomanufacturing and the Nanomanufacturing Center of Excellence at Lowell. He also developed the first UMass Lowell certificate program and courses to be offered online.
He holds 12 U.S. and two European patents, and has published more than 60 journal and conference papers, two book chapters and two books. He was the founding editor of SPE's Journal of Injection Molding Technology.
Malloy marveled that he was sharing the stage with members of the Plastics Hall of Fame. They had a huge impact on my plastics career. These people are giants of the industry, he said.
He singled out one Plastics Hall of Famer, Dominick Rosato, a prolific technical writer who authored and edited more than 28 books covering plastics. Rosato died in 2004.
He taught me how to deal with any audience. He taught me how to write, Malloy said.
In another SPE award, Barbara Arnold-Feret won the President's Cup.
A longtime SPE activist, Arnold-Feret was the society's 2008-09 treasurer. She was councilor from the North Texas section from 2003-06 and served as section president from 2004-06. She chaired the Product Design and Development Division from 2002 to 2003.
Arnold-Feret is manager of business development for Enviro Plastics Inc., a custom rotational molder in Fort Worth, Texas.
SPE is based in Newtown, Conn., where it just moved from its longtime home in nearby Brookfield, Conn.
Honored-service members have demonstrated long-term outstanding service to SPE. The following honored-service members were sponsored by at least one section or division:
Robert A. Beard, Robert A. Beard & Associates Inc.
Mark T. Berard, Dow Chemical Co.
Russell C. Broome, PolyOne Corp.
Dale Brosius, Brosius Management Co.
Frank Cangelosi, Unimin Corp.
Jerry M. Fischer, Tools & Troubleshooting Inc.
Kenneth A. Kerouac, SourceTek LLC
Francis B. McAndrew, retired, Hoechst Celanese
Scott L. Peters, HunterDouglas Manufacturing (China) Co. Ltd.
Monica H.L. Prokopyshen, Chrysler LLC
Vishu Shah, Consultek Consulting Group
Timothy D. Simko, Total Industries LLC
Clarence G. Smith, Horizon Hobby Inc.
William L. Smith, Polymer Sales Inc.
Fellows have contributed to the field of plastics engineering, science, technology or management. They must have a long-term status as a senior member of SPE and receive written sponsorship to reach fellow status.
The nine new fellows are:
Jose M. Castro, Ohio State University
Shia-Chung S. Chen, Chang Yuan Christian University
George Epstein, retired, Aerospace Corp.
Douglas E. Hirt, Clemson University
Rajendra K. Krishnaswamy, Metabolix Inc.
Patrick T. Mather, Syracuse University
Evan Mitsoulis, National Technical University (Athens, Greece)
Bruce M. Muller, Plastics Consulting Inc.
Rajen M. Patel, Dow Chemical Co.