Digital Magazine

ARC Announces Winners of Best Paper Awards

The Association for Roll-to-Roll Converters (ARC) has recognized the best papers presented at the 2023 R2R USA Conference. Winners were chosen from a field of 95 presenters.

“A special thank-you to all presenters for sharing your knowledge with the converting community and helping to make the event a huge success,” says ARC Executive Director Chris Kerscher. “We want to congratulate and thank all the Best Paper winners for the hard work that went into their award-winning presentations.”

Recipients of this year’s John Matteucci Technical Excellence Awards are Kenneth Glade from LTS Lohmann Therapy Systems and Dermot Monaghan from Gencoa, Ltd. The Matteucci awards, given to the authors of the best paper in the Web Coating and the Vacuum Web Coating tracks, honor the globally known leader in the field of web coatings, who inspired AIMCAL, ARC’s predecessor organization, and established an international conference on vacuum web coating.

Glade won in the Coating & Laminating track. In his presentation, “A Case Study in Eliminating Coating Voids in Oral Thin-Film Pharmaceutical Products,” Glade summarized how his company found the root cause of voids developing in a film coating just after its application. The cause proved to be a raw-material issue with one of the solution ingredients rather than the more obvious surface-tension problem with the substrate.

In the Vacuum Web Coating track, Monaghan’s presentation, “Sensing and Control of Vacuum Processes,” described results from using various sensors to monitor and enhance different plasma pre-treatment and vacuum-coating processes. Reliable sensing can enable advanced feedback control and the potential use of artificial intelligence to self-manage the system. His talk included practical examples of both methods.

Best Paper Awards also were given in the Web Handling, Printing, and Sustainability tracks.

In the Web Handling track, the Best Paper Award went to Kayla Rossi of Maplesoft for “Introduction to Simulation-Based Engineering in Web-Handling Systems.” Rossi discussed how simulation software can model and analyze a roll-to-roll web line system. Attendees were shown how to approach modeling and viewed techniques that save time compared to physical testing. She reviewed models and visualizations created using the MapleSim Web Handling Library.

In the Printing track, Traci Austin of Elevated Talent Consulting was recognized for “We’re Hiring! How to Win in Today’s Competitive Market.” Austin highlighted the challenges employers face in today’s battle for talent. Her presentation touched on how to win for your organization and future employees by using data analytics. She focused on three areas: understanding the job role; hiring the whole person; and offering a career. Jim Garvey, chair of the Gravure Committee, states the committee felt “… this topic was relevant to every business in today’s world and provided a different point of view and fresh perspective toward hiring, retaining, and cultivating talent.”

In the Sustainability track, Best Paper honors went to George Huber of Chemical Upcycling of Waste Plastics (CUWP). The paper, “Solvent-Targeted Recovery and Precipitation (STRAP): A New Paradigm for Plastic Recycling,” showed how developing scientific and engineering principles through CUWP, a multi-university center funded by the US Department of Energy, will enable the circular upcycling of plastic wastes into virgin resins and how STRAP allows recycling of multilayer plastics and mixed plastics.

The 2023 edition of the R2R USA Conference registered the highest number of attendees in five years. Planning for next year’s meeting (Sept. 22–26, 2024; Charlotte, NC) is already underway with a limited number of presentations to be scheduled in each track. Anyone who wishes to present at the 2024 conference may submit an abstract for consideration. The submission form is available at www.rolltoroll.org/r2r-call-for-papers.

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