Indianapolis Section



American Institute of Chemical Engineers

Indianapolis Section

November 2003 Newsletter

Editor: Lia Treffman

November Meeting

Where:  Wabash River Energy Ltd Gasification Facility in Terre Haute, Indiana

When: November 18, 2003

Schedule:   2:45 p.m.       Leave Indianapolis

                    4:30 p.m.       Arrive at plant gate

                    4:45-6:15 p.m.  Tour of facilities
6:20 p.m.       Return to Indianapolis
                    7:50 p.m.       Arrive at Indianapolis (we may want to stop for dinner)

Important:     Please wear pants and closed-toe shoes (you should also wear socks and a shirt, but I'm sure you knew that)

Directions:    Car pool arrangements will be made based on reservations with Kevin Keating.

RSVP: Advance reservations are REQUIRED.  Please respond to Kevin Keating at or 317-651-1698 with your name, company/school, email address and telephone number. Space may be limited. 

Please Note: Additional information will be sent to those registered by the above date.  Questions may be directed to Kevin Keating or Tom Leas ( or 317-232-8945).  We look forward to welcoming you.

The AIChE - Indianapolis Section is scheduled to tour the Wabash River Energy Ltd. (WREL) in West Terre Haute, Indiana on Tuesday, November 18th.  The Terre Haute Section of AIChE and the student section of the Rose-Hulman AIChE will join us at the plant site for the tour.  We will be leaving Indianapolis at 2:45 PM with an estimated time of arrival at WREL of 4:30 PM.  The Indianapolis car pool location will be at the downtown Marriott, more to follow.

In order to enter the WREL plant site, each member must read and fill out two forms, the first is the WREL Visitor Safety Forms and Rules form, (both the U.S. Citizen and Non-U.S. Citizen forms are available from Kevin).  Fill out only the one appropriate version of these forms.  The second form to be filled out is the WREL Safety Rules, this form is also available.  Having the forms filled out in advance will save you time upon arrival.

Note that in the spaces asking "Representing" and "Company" enter; "American Institute of Chemical Engineers".  The "Approved By" space will be filled in by a representative of WREL.

Also Kevin has a map showing how to find the plant if you travel on your own.   Everyone is to enter on Bolton Road through the Cinergy/PSI gate.  Stop at the guard house and the guard will direct you to the Wabash River Energy Ltd. Administration Building.  Travel to the building, the entrance we want is on the west side, park next to the Administration Building and proceed to the reception area.  

A list of attendee will be provided to the guard to facilitate entry.  Reservations are required by Tuesday, November 11th, to Kevin Keating (, 317-651-1698).

The WREL tour includes a presentation before the plant tour.  If there is enough interest we may stop for pizza or dinner in Terre Haute.  Estimated time of arrival back in Indianapolis is 7:30 PM to 9:00 PM depending on dinner plans.

2003/04 Meeting Schedule (including special events)

Special Events

On On November 1, 2003 Chairman Tom Leas, Past Chairman Alan Schmidt, Vice-Chairman Kevin Keating, and Newsletter Editor Lia Treffman staffed the AIChE booth at the Children’s Museum as part of the National Chemistry Week activities. This year's theme was "Earth's Atmosphere and Beyond." We used exhibit materials supplied by National Starch. A good, although messy time was had by all. Those of you who didn't participate MISSED OUT on interacting with lots of cute, smart kids. I even saw several people who could have been clones of our beloved Past Chairman Alan Schmidt.

Message from the Local Indianapolis AIChE Chairman

Fuel cells and coal gasification will be highlighted at our next plant tour to be held at the Wabash River Energy Ltd Gasification Facility in Terre Haute, Indiana. Please plan to join chemical engineers from the AIChE Indianapolis Section as well as the AIChE Terre Haute Section and the Student Chapter at Rose-Hulman for this great opportunity to see some important energy technologies from FuelCell Energy, Global Energy, and ConocoPhillips. Long-term policy trends (2020-2030) indicate future coal processing will need to have near-zero emissions and the ability for carbon capture with sequestration to address environmental and global warming concerns. As discussed at the 2003 - Twentieth Annual International Pittsburgh Coal Conference, gasification was considered to be the only technology that can process coal and economically capture carbon dioxide for disposal. The coal is converted to a pressurized syngas consisting mainly of carbon monoxide and hydrogen. The syngas then passes through a water-gas-shift reactor to yield additional hydrogen and carbon dioxide. The carbon dioxide and other contaminates are then separated from the stream to yield a purified hydrogen product, which then can be used by a fuel cell for electric generation. Chemical engineers will be needed to help commercialize these developments.  

Thomas E. Leas PE, Chairman of the AIChE Indianapolis Section

Advance Notice: AIChE Spring Meeting April 25-29, 2004 - New Orleans, LA

The AIChE Spring Meeting scheduled for April 25-29, 2004 in New Orleans, LA,  will cover the following areas of interest:

and will also address important issues including: For more information, visit their website at

AIChE Executive Committee
Indianapolis Section, 2003-2004