387532 The Art of the Mass Balance: The Cultural Tools of Entrepreneurial Chemical Startups

Tuesday, November 18, 2014: 1:45 PM
314 (Hilton Atlanta)
Christina M. Borgese, PreProcess, San Ramon, CA

The product cycle processes of tech based startups and chemical startups are inherently different.  Tech startup thought leaders teach entrepreneurs to hit the ship date even if all the kinks aren’t worked out.  Later a patch can be uploaded by customers to fix bugs or add functionality at minimal cost to the startup.  

Chemical startups differ significantly as processing plants are capital intensive and must incorporate safety, equipment lead times, and construction efforts.  Adopting an entrepreneurial approach, chemical startups can deliver against the fast paced timeline while designing the flexibility required to commercialize a first of its kind technology.  The tool for success in an entrepreneurial chemical startup is the mass balance.

Keeping score in an industrial startup is dependent upon the value and quality of the product.  The disposition of the constituents in the product determines the cash flow possibilities in the operation cost and the needed investment to enable the conversion of the raw material feedstock mass into the valued finished product.  The key to a successful mass balance is the validation of the instruments and test methods measure the chemical engineering entrepreneurial effort’s success.

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