Polymer Society Board have an away day at Victrex
The location of Victrex plc, based at Thornton Cleveleys, Lancashire for the October meeting was arranged through Dr Alan Wood, the Board’s Vice Chairman and Composites Technical Leader at the company. In particular the opportunity was taken to see the new Technology Centre (where the Board meeting was held) and take a tour round the state of the art production facilities and laboratories.
Victrex plc is a leading global manufacturer of high performance polyaryletherketones (PEEKs) comprising of two divisions; Victrex Polymer Solutions specialises in the development and manufacture of these polymers which can also be supplied as coatings, films and pipes for the transport, industrial and the electronics markets with Invibio Biomaterial Solutions focusing on providing specialist solutions for medical device manufacturers.
The agenda for the October meeting continued to follow the objectives of The Polymer Society which we believe identifies the needs of our technical community by maintaining a focus for professional development and attracting new members into the Institute. After welcoming a new Board member, Dr Ian Robinson of Lucite International, the agenda primarily covered the following items.
• Reviewing our various technical committees’ activities; the Rubber in Engineering Group, the committees covering PVC and Polymer Processing and Engineering. We are also continuing to establish our Applied Polymer Science Group through the auspices of the North East Polymer Association (NEPA).
• Agreeing on the outline content of our autumn e-newsletter to members who have expressed an interest in polymers in their profile. The newsletter is compiled, amongst many other activities, by our hard working and enthusiastic IOM3 coordinator, Dr Matthew Thornton.
• Monitoring the visits statistics on our web ‘microsite’ (well within the top 10 of the 42 technical divisions, societies and committees of the Institute) and agreeing how to improve content with news items etc.
• Discussing our ongoing engagement with other organisations such as the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE), Materials KTN Polymer Sector, the British Plastics Federation (BPF) and the British Rubber and Polyurethane Products Association (BRPPA) who are all represented on the Board.
• Finalising how best to additionally promote our 2013 Awards to maximise the number of nominations for our consideration. This year it was the Prince Philip Award (for polymers in the service of mankind), the Colwyn Medal (to an individual for outstanding services to the rubber industry of a scientific, technical or engineering character) and the James S Walker award (for an unpublished project report by a student on the subject of polymers, which has already been examined).
The Alan Glanvill award (for published work of particular merit in the field of polymers) is nominated by the editors of Plastics, Rubber and Composites: Macromolecular Engineering (PRC: ME).
• Discussing how to support Materials World via suitable articles etc. and noting the continuing progress made in PRC: ME in impact and upcoming editions in the pipeline. The Chief Editor, Professor Phil Coates also sits on the Board.
• On top of all these issues we also continuously monitor our costs in relation to our meetings, sponsorship and general support activities.
With much thanks to Victrex plc for their support and hospitality, another constructive Board meeting was concluded. Now we have to follow up on all the actions that were agreed!