IEEE offers Capitol ideas
The 56th IEEE-IAS PCA Cement Industry Technical Conference was held at the Gaylord National Resort in National Harbor (MD), near Washington, DC, USA, between 13-17 April 2014. The conference provided a timely update on the recovery of US cement demand and highlighted some of the technology advances in the sector. By Rob Roy, USA.
As delegates and exhibitors acquainted themselves with the Gaylord National Resort on Sunday, 13 April, various IEEE-IAS CIC committees held meetings, followed by an evening reception in the exhibition hall which featured many leading equipment suppliers to North American cement producers.
Under the theme of ‘Sustainable strength through innovation’ this year’s conference programme explored a wide range of topics including safety, drives, power and automation.
Proceedings were complemented by a visit to Essroc’s state-of-the-art Martinsburg cement plant – a tour which proved highly popular with the Italcementi cement works having undergone significant upgrades over recent years (see ICR April 2014).
New to the conference this year was a concurrent training programme for new personnel to the cement industry.
US demand springs back
After an opening address by Ted Richardson, IEEE-IAS CIC chair, Derek Nicholls of Essroc Cement, who led the local organising committee, welcomed all delegates to Washington, DC. Jeffrey Nagel of Resco Products and IEEE-IAS CIC vice chair introduced the first speaker of the conference, the PCA’s chief economist, Ed Sullivan.