[Image above] Credit: Your Best Digs; Flickr CC BY 2.0

It’s over.

2016, that is. Undoubtedly, 2017 will offer plenty of topics for media and cocktail party chatter, and some of that will happen at ACerS events. We have an exciting year of activities to look forward to. As usual here at ACerS, we’ve got a lot in the works. Keep your eye on Ceramic Tech Today, the website, and of course, the ACerS Bulletin for all the latest details.

Let’s open that calendar and take a look!

January = Florida meetings

We begin the year with our traditional double-team meetings, Electronic Materials and Applications (EMA) and the International Conference on Advanced Ceramics and Composites (ICACC).

EMA, organized by ACerS Electronics and Basic Science Division, will take place January 18–20 in Orlando, Fla., and the ACerS Engineering Ceramics Division organized the 41st edition of ICACC that will take place in Daytona Beach, Fla., January 22–27. You still have time to register for either meeting!

And graduate students also have the opportunity to participate in Winter Workshop, which will take a deep dive into electroceramics in the morning and focus on career management in the afternoon. Winter Workshop is in Orlando and includes attendance at EMA.

I care, you care, we all care about MCARE

Why? Energy and environmental security demand a viable portfolio of traditional, renewable, and alternative energy conversion and storage technologies. Materials Challenges for Alternative and Renewable Energies is dedicated to advancing the science and engineering of energy technologies. The meeting, a collaboration between ACerS and the Korean Institute of Chemical Engineers, will come to Jeju Island in South Korea on February 20–24. It looks to be energizing!

Refractories’ big year

This is a big year for the refractories community with the St. Louis Section/Refractory Ceramics Division 53rd Annual Symposium March 29–30 and the Unified International Technical Conference on Refractories (UNITECR) September 26–29. The annual St. Louis/RCD symposium has grown into one of the premier meetings for the refractories industry and brings together about 200 participants from around the world. This year the symposium focuses on the tricky business of high-temperature refractory testing—an issue that industry leaders have been raising for quite a while.

This year UNITECR is in Santiago, Chile, hosted by ALAFAR, the Latin American refractories association. The global refractories community attends this meeting, and its technical program and networking opportunities are truly world-class. If you buy, sell, supply, or use refractories, this is the meeting to be at this year.

Folks, we’re in this to make money

Speaking of buying and selling, did you know that marketing to engineering clients requires a different approach from standard B2B marketing? We’re bringing together experts in business intelligence and marketing to engineers for a one-day forum where they will present strategies and discuss tactics.

Come to the April 24, 2017, Marketing for Manufacturers Forum at the 6th Ceramic Business Leadership Summit in Cleveland, Ohio, to sharpen your knowledge of the essential marketing strategies and tactics. The day concludes with a workshop on developing a marketing plan.

Directly following the Ceramic Business Leadership Summit, Ceramics Expo returns to Cleveland for its third year and promises to be bigger and better than ever. Check out the website to see who will be exhibiting this year and decide whether you can afford not to be there!

While we’re on the topic of business—is your staff as highly trained as they need to be? All the marketing and networking in the world won’t do you much good if your workforce is not performing optimally.

ACerS Manufacturing Division has put together three Targeted Learning Workshops that will take place prior to Ceramics Expo. The following three short courses are designed to increase your staff’s productivity, competitiveness, and safety compliance.

  • Statistical Process Control in Ceramic Processing
  • Lean Essentials Boot Camp Basics for Manufacturing
  • OSHA 10-Hour Industrial Outreach Safety Course

Mahalo to the future!

What will manufacturers be making 10, 20, or 30 years hence? The role of research and development is to find solutions to grand challenges such as energy, health care, and environment threats. And the 12th Pacific Rim Conference on Ceramic and Glass Technology will bring together more than 1,000 researchers from around the world to report on progress in their labs.

The PacRim franchise historically is fertile for building new collaborations, especially international ones, and for vetting new research ideas. In addition, the Glass and Optical Materials Division will hold its annual conference and meeting concurrently with PacRim. Bonus!

If you think you could tolerate being in Hawaii May 21–26, consider registering for PacRim/GOMD.

Build, baby, build!

Despite the digital revolution, “brick and mortar” establishments still need—you guessed it—bricks and mortar. And the Structural Clay Products Division (SCPD) and Cements Division meetings bring leaders and researchers from those industries together to apply state-of-the-art science to these classic building materials. Although these materials trace their use back millennia, evolving needs drive the community to network and expand its scientific understanding.

This year, SCPD will join forces with the ACerS Southwest Section and National Brick Research Center for a technical meeting that will include plant tours and a banquet. Join them May 9–11 in Fort Worth, Texas.

The Cements Division moves to Georgia Tech in Atlanta for its meeting June 26–28. Organizers will announce meeting details shortly.

ACerS Annual Meeting and MS&T17 return to Pittsburgh

The Materials Science and Technology conference comes back to Pittsburgh, Pa., October 8–12. Besides bringing 3,000 materials scientists together for a week of sharing the latest research in ceramics, glass, metals, and other materials, this is the week of ACerS Annual Meeting—its 119th! It marks the change in leadership of the Society at all levels—Board of Directors, Division leaders, and committees.

Many of ACerS prestigious award lectures occur during MS&T, and the Society recognizes members at the annual awards banquet for their contributions to the Society and state-of-the-art advancements. If you are looking to get more involved in the Society, plan on attending the Annual Meeting and your Division’s business meetings.

Science of sintering

Sintering may be the most fundamental of ceramic processes. While sintering is simple in principle—heat and densify—it’s a complex, dynamic, non-equilibrium process that is not so easy to understand and control well. The eighth rendering of the International Conference on Sintering will explore all things sintering in San Diego, Calif., November 12–16.

Here’s looking forward to an exciting year!