Thursday, 24 June 2010

Autumn Programme Shaping Up

Our programme of events and lectures for the later half of 2010 is coming together very nicely mainly due to the efforts of our secretary Ian Carson.

Magritte and Music
We kick off our programme with a guided tour in English of the new Magritte Museum in central Brussels on the morning of Saturday September 18th. This will be followed by a short stroll over the road to lunch at the very fine restaurant at the top of the Musical Instrument Museum. The restaurant enjoys magnificent views over Brussels.

On the evening of Tuesday September 28th our 2010-11 lecture programme is initiated by Dr. David Ross of Huntsman Chemicals based in Everberg on the old ICI site. He will talk about polymeric dispersants and surfactants in the excellent Swoosh Lounge at BSB.

Our attention turns to biotechnology, biofuels and beyond on the evening of Wednesday 27th October when we will welcome Prof Franck Dumeignil of the University of Lille. Prof. Dumeignil is the main coordinator for a major new €37 million European Commission FP7 research project on the ‘biorefinery’ concept: EUBIOREF. This event will be held in the Brel theatre at BSB.

The idea of a biorefinery is to mimic a conventional oil refinery in terms of the use of a number of biomass feedstocks to produce a spectrum of useful fuel and chemical products. But a biorefinery will use highly efficient processes producing minimal environmental impact and, of course, only consuming renewable raw materials.

Plasma tech
In mid November Dr Laurent Denis from the University of Mons will be talking to us about plasma technologies and thin film fabrication and characterisation. Details of this event are close to final confirmation and we anticipate the event being held in the Swoosh Lounge at BSB.

IYC 2011
Don’t forget 2011 is International Year of Chemistry (IYC2011). We hope our first IYC event will be a Café Chimique on Climate Change. Our Café Chimique will mimic the Café Scientifique format and we hope to stimulate a debate amongst the audience and the speakers. We will be inviting speakers with differing views on the topic who will present and then debate the issue with interventions welcome from the ‘floor’. The probable venue for this first RSC Belgium Café Chimique will be the Swoosh Lounge at BSB.

More details on all these events to follow during the summer.

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Gas kinetics at Leuven

The RSC's Gas Kinetics Discussion Group (in cooperation with the Reaction Kinetics Group of Katholieke Universiteit Leuven) is organising the 21st International Symposium on Gas Kinetics (GK2010) in Leuven from 18 to 23 July, 2010.

This symposium is bi-annual and acts as a stimulating forum for scientists around the world to present and discuss the latest advances in experimental, computational and theoretical research related to fundamental gas-phase chemistry, photo-chemistry and heterogeneous processes occurring in gaseous media.

Topics covered in the symposium sessions include the fields of atmospheric chemistry, combustion chemistry, the chemistry of interstellar regions and outer-planetary atmospheres. A specific session in 2010 will cover the latest advances in tropospheric ozone chemistry.

For more information, please consult the website above or contact the symposium organisers.

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Two Engineering Events

Details of two events organised by sister engineering organisations have just been forwarded to us. If you are interested in attending either event please email the person named as contact for the event directly - not RSC Belgium. Thanks.

Intelligent Transportation for Dynamic Environment

When: Thursday 10 June 2010 at 19h00

Where: Stadscampus, Universiteit Antwerpen, Prinsstraat 13, B-2000 Antwerpen.

Mr. Rochdi Merzouiki, University of Science and Technology of Lille (USTL-Lagis) will discuss the Intelligent Transportation for Dynamic Environment project (InTraDE) that is developing a framework and methodology for the implementation of an Intelligent Automatic Vehicle (IAV) into the ports of North West Europe. The implementation of the IAV will bring about an improvement in productivity and competitiveness through optimisation of loading and discharging of containers using IAV's. The key tasks of this project are the development of a dynamic virtual simulator of the port operational environment and the development of the IAV prototype.

The event is organised by Institute of Marine Engineering, Science, & Technology (IMarEST), contact person John Riordan.

BP Louisiana Oil Spill and environmental disaster in USA. Causes, consequences, solutions.

When: Tuesday, June 15th at 19h00

Where: The Medieval Trinitatis Kapel, Vriesestraat 20\22, 3311 NR, Dordrecht, The Netherlands.

This discussion meeting invites upstream, environmental or other experts to present their ideas and expertise to consider how to solve the situation in the Gulf of Mexico.

The event is organised by the Energy Institute (EI), contact person: Arend van Campen, Chairman EI Netherlands.

Monday, 7 June 2010

Beautiful BayKomm

The RSC Belgium weekend in Germany was successfully concluded with a visit on Sunday 6 June to the BayKomm Centre in Leverkeusen just north of Cologne.

The BayKomm facility is in the heart of the huge Bayer Chemical Park at Leverkeusen and features eight exhibition rooms with over 300 exhibits, videos and information panels covering the full range of Bayer developments and chemical advances since its foundation in 1863.

Our guide, Tim, took us through a series of informative presentations – including a polyurethane preparation (see right) – before lunch in the bistro that is part of the centre.

Following lunch there was just enough time for a stroll around the impressive 15 000 square metre Japanese gardens (see below) that surround BayKomm before the return journey to Belgium.

The 2010 weekend in Cologne was a great success and our thanks go to Ian Carson for organising the details.

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Sunny day at Augustusburg

The RSC Belgium Summer expedition to Germany got off to great start with a meal in Cologne on Friday evening next to the river Rhine.

On Saturday the group of members and friends visited the Schlosser Augustusburg (see above) and Falkenlust in Bruhl. It was a fantastic sunny day and after lunch at a small restaurant that is adjacent to the Falkenlust some of our party went to the Max Ernst Museum in Bruhl, while others drove down to the Rhine below Bonn and crossed by ferry to visit Konigswinter.
Everyone joined up again in the evening for an 'al fresco' meal at our hotel - the Clostermanns Hof.

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Latest (last?) Section Newsletter published

The May 2010 issue of the RSC Belgium Section Newsletter has just been published. This 12th edition of 'La Chimie' can be downloaded by clicking on the link above.

The newsletter reviews recent activities of the section and looks forward to future events. The function of the newsletter is now being largely replaced by this newsblog, but if you have any comments or news you wish to transmit to the section membership please don't hesitate to contact the section's newsletter/ blog editor Tim Reynolds.