Midland, MI - March 28, 2012
The Dow Chemical Company (NYSE: DOW) is pleased to announce that William J. (Jack) Kruper, a corporate fellow at Dow, has been honored with the American Chemistry Society (ACS) Award for Affordable Green Chemistry. Dr. Kruper earned the award for successfully developing a new process for converting glycerin to epichlorohydrin, an intermediate in the production of liquid epoxy resins commonly used in the electronics industry.
"Obviousy, this is a tremendous honor, and we appreciate the recognition by ACS for this approach and its implications," commented Dr. Kruper. "It turned out to be about the best process on the planet for making epichlorohydrin. We’re still looking into the option of doing this chemistry commercially, and we are active in maintaining and establishing intellectual property."
Dr. Kruper addressed the ACS Division of Inorganic Chemistry yesterday in accepting the award, which recognizes outstanding scientific discoveries that lay the foundation for more environmentally-advanced products, more cost effective manufacturing processes, and more novel technologies that improve the quality of our everyday lives. In the spirit of the award, Dr. Kruper has chosen to donate the cash prize that accompanies the award ($5,000) to Colorado State University in order to fund a Dow Symposia Series on Sustainable Chemistry.
In the early 2000s, increasing production of biodiesel boosted supply and lowered prices of the by-product glycerin. Dr. Kruper saw opportunity, and began exploring the potential for glycerin as an affordable and renewable feedstock for commodity chemicals and plastics. Ultimately, he and his colleagues at Dow focused on producing epichlorohydrin from glycerin rather than from propylene.
By reacting glycerin with hydrogen chloride in the presence of a carboxylic acid catalyst at elevated temperature and pressure, the conversion process allows the water produced as a by-product to stay in the reaction vessel. Glycerin provides a solventless process that produces far less wastewater than the propylene conversion process. As a result, the conversion requires smaller plants and processing vessels, as well as less investment. The process is now covered by three U.S. patents on a commercial scale.
Dr. Kruper has worked at Dow for three decades. He earned his B.S. in chemistry from the University of Michigan, Dearborn, and his Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the university’s Ann Arbor campus. He holds 62 U.S. patents and has published 26 peer-reviewed papers.
Dow (NYSE: Dow) combines the power of science and technology to passionately innovate what is essential to human progress. The Company connects chemistry and innovation with the principles of sustainability to help address many of the world’s most challenging problems such as the need for clean water, renewable energy generation and conservation, and increasing agricultural productivity. Dow’s diversified industry-leading portfolio of specialty chemical, advanced materials, agrosciences and plastics businesses delivers a broad range of technology-based products and solutions to customers in approximately 160 countries and in high growth sectors such as electronics, water, energy, coatings and agriculture. In 2011, Dow had annual sales of $60 billion and employed approximately 52,000 people worldwide. The Company’s more than 5,000 products are manufactured at 197 sites in 36 countries across the globe. References to "Dow" or the "Company" mean The Dow Chemical Company and its consolidated subsidiaries unless otherwise expressly noted. More information about Dow can be found at www.dow.com.
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