Panel I - Innovative Process and its modalities
Paper N1.4 - Innovation in the US Chemical Industry
Parry M. Norling, DuPont, CR&D, USA
Abstract: The US chemical industry has been facing consolidation,
increased competition, reduced earnings, and declining market values.
The "traditional" chemical industry (excluding life sciences)
has seen its innovation rate dive during the past decade, as its
R&D intensity (ratio of R&D spending to sales) has declined
from 6% to 4%. While the US chemical industry is indeed large and
mature, innovation may be the key to renewed growth. A study sponsored
by the Council for Chemical Research found that for each dollar
invested in chemical R&D produces approximately 2 dollars in
income over the seven-year period. We will review a number of enabling
tools that are being employed by the US chemical industry in efforts
to spark this drive:
1) Modeling and simulation
Significant advances are being made in computational chemistry and
modeling and simulation techniques. A number of modeling and simulation
packages are now available.
2) Green Chemistry including bio-based processes.
CHEMRAWN XIV focused on green chemistry and our recent report "Next
Generation Environmental technologies: Benefits and Barriers"
looks at manufacturing processes derived from green chemistry. Many
of these processes are bio-based using enzymes as the reaction catalyst.
3) Combinatorial chemistry and high-throughput experimentation
This methodology has enormous impact on the number of feasible options
and solutions. The example of the results of collaboration between
Smyx Technologies and Dow Chemical will be discussed. We will also
mention some of the steps being taken by the US Government to promote
innovation that can impact the chemical industry.