Conference Speakers - Oil & Gas US 2016

Smithers Rapra is pleased to be working with the following esteemed leaders to shape the 2016 Oil & Gas agenda.

  • Jenny Cooper, CEng, Commercial Manager, Smithers Rapra

  • Avi Gadkari, Ph D, Technical & Business Development Manager, Functional Chemicals, AkzoNobel

  • Mingyu Huang, Principal Engineer, GE Oil & Gas

  • Dr. Jay Yun, EMS Polymers Group Manager, Principal, Schlumberger

  • Nerrav Verma, Senior Research Engineer in Materials & Fabrication field,  ExxonMobil

  • Dipti Singh, PhD Scientist, Halliburton


Below are the confirmed speakers for this year's High Performance Polymers for Oil & Gas conference!

  • Rigoberto Advincula

    Professor Case Western Reserve University

    Rigoberto Advincula is Professor at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, USA.  He is a Fellow of the American Chemical Society (ACS), Fellow of the Polymer Science and Engineering Division (ACS), Fellow of the Polymer Chemistry Division (ACS). He is also a member of NACE, SPE, ERC, MRS, and AAAS and a frequently sought out speaker and expert in polymer materials, coatings, and sensors. He received the Herman Mark Scholar Award in 2013 from the ACS. He is Editor of Reactive and Functional Polymers and Associate Editor of Polymer Reviews and sits on the Editorial Advisory board of a number of major polymer journals. He is currently Chair of the Polymer Chemistry Division, ACS. His group does research in polymer materials, nanocomposites, colloidal science, hybrid materials, and ultrathin films towards applications from display coatings to biomedical devices. He consults for a number of companies focusing on the most challenging problems and definition of structure-property relationships towards commercial applications. Currently, he is director of PETRO Case a Consortium dealing with the challenging materials problems of the Petroleum Industry.

  • Peter Boul

    Senior Research Scientist Aramco Services Company

    Dr. Boul is a senior research scientist at Aramco’s Houston Research Center where his research focus is oil well cement chemistry and water-based drilling muds.  He has extensive experience in oil field chemicals and market-driven product development.  Dr. Boul’s scientific background is in organic chemistry with a special focus on supramolecular chemistry, polymers and nanomaterials.  He has published over 30 peer-reviewed papers and patents in these fields. Dr. Boul holds a PhD from Rice University in chemistry.  

  • Tim Bremner

    Vice President of Materials Technology Hoerbiger Corporation of America, Inc.

    Dr. Bremner began his academic pursuits in 1982 at the University of Waterloo in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada where he remained through 1992, obtaining both an Honors B.Sc. Degree in Applied Chemistry and a Ph.D. in Polymer Chemistry. In fall 1992, he took a position with the Polymer Materials and Radiation Group at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia as a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow. After two years in Australia, he continued his academic research in the field of solid state NMR of polymers with the Departments of Chemistry and Physics at University of Waterloo. In 1995, Dr. Bremner left academia for a position as a Senior Scientist with Nova Chemicals Research and Development in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, working on product development, process technology development and technology licensing. In 2000, he joined Aspen Technology as a Senior Staff Engineer in the Polymer IBU, providing  process technology consulting, and design and implementation services in advanced process control (APC) systems spanning first principals, hybrid and neural net based predictive control systems for a broad range of commercial polymerization facilities. In 2004, Dr. Bremner joined his current employer, Hoerbiger Corporation of America, as the Vice President of Materials Technology. 

    Since 2009, he has also served as the Co-Director of the APPEAL Research Consortium at Texas A&M University, studying high performance polymers in energy sector applications, and in early 2016 formed a second consortium, the APPEAL Material Providers Group, who are focused on improving the quality and demonstrated performance of well designed and properly characterized polymer materials to the energy sector industries.

  • Ton Broekhuis

    Department of Chemical Engineering and Product Design University of Groningen

    Teaching and research chemical product design, molecular engineering, and, new product development and innovation. Covering technical design and product development including project management.

  • Kevin Cavicchi

    Professor The University of Akron, Department of Polymer Engineering

    Kevin Cavicchi received his B.S. in Materials Science and Engineering for Cornell University in 1998 and his Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities in 2003 where he studied with Prof. Timothy Lodge. After serving as a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Massachusetts – Amherst in the Department of Polymer Science and Engineering from 2003-2005 with Prof. Thomas Russell he joined the Department of Polymer Engineering at the University of Akron in 2006. Prof. Cavicchi was promoted to Associate Prof. in 2012 and Associate Dean, Academic Affairs for the College of Polymer Science and Polymer Engineering in 2016.  His research focuses on the molecular engineering of advanced materials including shape memory polymers and actuators, small molecule organogelators, and supramolecular polymers through ionic interactions.

  • Limeng Chen

    Senior Engineer Cabot Corporation

    An entrepreneurial engineer with extensive experience in product development, project management and customer interaction. PHD in Materials Engineering with technical expertise in polymer science and engineering, polymer composites, polymer foams, rubber compound formulation and properties, polymer composites, nanoparticle synthesis and modification.

  • Daniel Connor

    Associate Director, Global Synthesis, Architectural, Protective & Marine PPG

    Dr. Daniel Connor is the Associate Director of Global Polymer Synthesis at PPG in Pittsburgh, PA, USA with responsibility to globally lead the design and synthesis of new polymers for all PPG coatings business units.  PPG is the world’s largest coatings company.  Daniel also leads R&D at PPG’s Coatings Innovation Center for the Protective & Marine and Architectural business units.  He is responsible for innovation in PPG’s coatings for Oil and Gas.  Daniel has a Ph. D. in Organic Chemistry from the Georgia Institute of Technology and has an extensive background in technology creation and leadership in the specialty chemical, thermoplastic polymer, and coatings industry.

  • Winn Darden

    Business Manager AGC Chemicals Americas

    Mr. Winn Darden has more than 25 years of experience in sales and marketing of coating raw materials and specialty coatings.  His current field of expertise is in fluoropolymer coatings used for industrial maintenance applications.  He has authored more than a dozen papers for conferences like those held by the Society for Protective Coatings, the National Association of Corrosion Engineers, the National Steel Bridge Alliance, and the New York City Bridge Conference.  Mr. Darden has a BS in Chemistry and an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin.  He holds 12 U. S. Patents.

  • Ming Yu Haung

    Principal Engineer GE Oil & Gas

    Dr. Ming Yu Huang is a Principal Engineer with GE Oil & Gas. He has been with GE Oil & Gas for eight years working on elastomer technology for drilling applications, and has published several patents and conference/journal papers on high performance elastomers for oil and gas industries. Before joining GE, he was Chief Chemist of elastomers for aerospace, aircraft and automotive applications.  He received B.S. and M.S of Polymer Engineering from Tongji University and Zhejiang University in China, and Ph.D. of Polymer Science from The University of Akron in Ohio.

  • Steven Henning

    Global R&D Director Total USA

    Steven K. Henning is Total Cray Valley’s Global Director for Research and Development, and VP of Fina Technology, Inc., responsible for new product development, applications development, technical service and intellectual property management.  His career began at The Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company in Akron, OH working for the Exploratory Polymer Research group as part of Corporate Research, North American Tire Division, and later for Goodyear’s Chemical Division as Team Leader for Anionic and Emulsion Polymer Development.   He then moved to apposition in Total, responsible for managing the thermoset applications team for Sartomer, Inc.  Henning received his BS degree in Materials Science and Engineering from The Pennsylvania State University and was conferred a master’s degree in Polymer Science from the University of Akron.  He is an inventor on over 20 US and international patent files and has published extensively in the area of polymer science.

  • Betty Huang

    Research Scientist - Polymer Baker Hughes, Inc.

    Betty Huang is an active research scientist with more than ten years’ in R&D field, nine in oil&gas industry.  She possesses multi-discipline experience includes: polymer development and characterization, ASTM testing, material approval, recommendation and failure analysis for elastomer in Downhole seal applications. In addition, she is also enthusiastic in participating API 20L, focusing on quality control of seal manufacture in oil&gas industry.

    Betty has an undergraduate degree in chemistry from Peking University at Beijing, Master’s degree in Chemistry and Electrical Engineering from University of Houston. Betty is certified Project Management Professional.

    During spare time, Betty likes to travel, enjoy classic music and photography with family.

  • Steve Jagels

    HM Royal, Inc. Territory Manager

    Steve Jagels is a territory manager at HM Royal, Inc., a leading distributor of materials for the rubber, plastics, sealants and specialty coatings industries.  Located in Houston, he develops solutions for non-metallic materials serving the oil and gas market.  He has worked as a professional in the polymer industry for 20 years in a variety of roles including both business and technical.  Steve is a frequent speaker at conferences on the topics elastomer technology and sealing. He is a member of the American Chemical Society and the Energy Polymer Group.  He is alum of Tulane University, the University of Pennsylvania Wharton School, and Rowan University.

  • Nishant Negandhi

    Business Development Manager Evonik

    Bio coming soon! 

  • Phil VanTrump

    CTO Meredian Holdings Group

    Bio coming soon! 

  • Neerav Verma

    Senior Research Engineer in Materials & Fabrication field ExxonMobil

    Dr. Neerav Verma has been working as Sr. Research Engineer in Materials and Fabrication group at ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company since 2011. Prior to joining ExxonMobil, he completed his PhD. and MS. from Carnegie Mellon University in the field of Metallurgy and Materials Science and engineering. While at ExxonMobil, Dr. Verma has worked on various projects focused at pipeline welding and pipeline rehabilitation. 

    Dr. Verma has been a past reviewer of Metallurgial and Material Transactions as well as a reviewer of articles from TMS Conference, welding metallurgy and processes, cryogenic materials, microstructual characterization quatitative image analysis and thermodynamics. 

  • Bryan Wollam

    CEO Wollam Petroleum Advisory Group, LLC

    Bryan Wollam is one of the world's most respected professional's in the Petroleum & Natural Gas Industry, known for his unmatched track record of success, desire for winning, partnerships, value propositions for clients, passion to improve the industry and drive to make the world a better place. He is an accomplished professional with broad experience and recognition in operational excellence, quality, reliability, and HSE in multiple industries. He has expertise in leading organizational transformation resulting in profitability and shareholder value. He is also known as a distinguished speaker, effective communicator and trusted advisor to all segments of the petroleum & natural gas industry. 

    In his 22+ years in the industry, he served in leadership positions for Halliburton and Weatherford and as CEO for WPAG, working with more than a hundred of the world's most successful oil and gas companies. His management techniques, professional training programs and his ability to help clients transform their quality, reliability and safety performance is unmatched. The achievements are considered epic, and as a result, state-owned, international, national oil companies and service supply organizations utilize him for training and advisory services. He sits on boards and committees for multiple trade organization to include API, IACET, and IADC.

    Bryan has been defined by his zealous love of teaching and commitment to building leaders that transform organizations. WPAG has created the industry’s most coveted training programs and he regularly teaches these programs. Due to success, Bryan founded Wollam Groups to duplicate the success with other industry segments. Wollam Groups offers executive education and management training resulting in professional certifications and CEUs through IACET. Bryan is intimately involved in every aspect of the business. As CEO, he interfaces directly with industry leaders and gets to know each client.

  • Yusheng Yuan

    Technical Advisor Baker Hughes, Inc.

    Mr. Yusheng Yuan is currently a Technical Advisor in Research & Technology with Baker Hughes Completion & Wellbore Intervention. He joined Baker Hughes in 1997 and served as technical leading roles in polymers, composites and technical performance evaluation for 19 years. His research interests include polymers, composites and their mechanics, polymer and composites downhole applications, thermomechanical testing and characterization, and development of HPHT in-situ thermomechanical testing and analysis methods for polymers and composites. He authored more than 30 technical papers, articles or book chapters in the field of polymers and composites, composite mechanics and test methods. He is also an inventor of eight US patents in new material development and composite oilfield applications. He is a key inventor for the earliest drillable composite bridge and frac plugs and recently for the disintegratable polymer composites for degradable downhole tools. He is a recognized expert in the industry in using advanced composites downhole, studying effects of the HPHT hot-wet environments on composite materials and developing the unique HPHT in-situ thermomechanical testing and analysis methods. He holds a BS degree in Aerospace Engineering Mechanics and a MS degree in Mechanical Engineering specialized in composite materials and mechanics. He is currently an active member of ISO 23936 Task Committee. Before joining the oil service industry in 1994, he had taught and conducted research in several universities for 15 years. 

  • Bill Zhou

    Principal Scientist-Chemist Halliburton

    Bill received his Master's Degree in Polymer Chemistry and Physics from Sichuan University, China, and Ph.D. Degree in Organic Chemistry from Texas Tech University. Before joining Halliburton, he worked for CESI Chemical, a Flotek Company for five years,working on stimulation fluids, including fracturing fluids, surfactant chemistry, polymer friction reducers, demulsifiers, and core flow testing. Since joining Halliburton, he has developed and co-developed two novel polymers as high temperature viscosifiers/fluid loss control additives for water-based drilling fluids.