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Chemical Industry Awards

Double victory for Johnson Matthey

Johnson Matthey

Johnson Matthey picked up two awards at the 2016 Chemical Industries Association Chemical Industry Awards.

GSK Innovation Award

Johnson Matthey has developed and commercialised a new catalyst that greatly improves the environmental credentials of vinyl chloride monomer (VCM) production from acetylene by making the process mercury free.

VCM is an important intermediate step in the production of polyvinyl chloride (PVC), the world’s third most widely produced synthetic plastic polymer.

The judges were particularly impressed by the skill of the company’s scientists in adapting a catalyst that was commercially unviable into one that provides fantastic commercial and environmental benefits.

The award is a recognition of a great innovative technology development effort in Johnson Matthey.

Speaking about the award, Sebastiaan VanHaandel, Process Technologies Business Manager said: “The award is a recognition of a great innovative technology development effort in Johnson Matthey, both in chemistry and chemical engineering.

“Our novel mercury free VCM catalyst, PRICAT™ MFC, is a further example of Johnson Matthey’s capabilities in and commitment to sustainable technologies. PRICAT™ MFC will no doubt greatly contribute to achieve the goals of the Minamata treaty, which is a binding international treaty to reduce mercury use.”

BASF Young Ambassador Award

Johnson Matthey chemical engineer Stefano Ceci (pictured above, far left) works for the Process Technologies division in Billingham and is a keen STEM ambassador – promoting science, technology, engineering and maths to schoolchildren – as well as an active member of the Teesside Institution of Chemical Engineers group.

The judges were impressed by Stefano’s knowledge of the issues facing the industry, his confident and mature style and his out of the box thinking.

Commenting on his award, Stefano said: “The award recognises the efforts of young people to raise the profile of STEM subjects in the community, which have helped further the industry.

“Over the next year I will be engaging with the CIA to provide a voice for young people in the chemicals industry.”

The winners were announced at a celebration dinner in Liverpool.

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