William Pittman and Family William Pittman and Family

Micropack employee recognised by STS-AIChE

A Micropack employee has been recognised with an STS-AIChE Award.


STS-AIChE, the leading global organisation for chemical engineering professionals, hosts annual awards that celebrate innovations within the industry at both international and regional level.


William Pittman, PhD., a senior fire and gas detection consultant at Micropack, received the STS-AIChE 2019 South Texas Section Best In-Practice Paper Award for his paper, ‘Case Study on a Fire Within a Road-Based Portable Bitumen Storage Tanker’.


The paper was co-authored by the late Dr M. Sam Mannan, former Director of the Mary Kay O’Connor Process Safety Center at Texas A&M, who sadly passed away in 2018.


The case study examines the circumstances surrounding a fire that began within a towed bitumen storage tanker. The fire, which broke out in Montreal in 2009, caused significant damage to the surrounding area and destroyed two local businesses. 


The paper found that poor training, a failure to follow safety procedures and the design of the tanker itself were among the principal causes of the fire. It concluded that companies that manufacture, handle and use bitumen should review their procedures for cleaning storage tanks and assess the design of their heating systems to avoid similar accidents in future.  


Speaking of his award, William said: “It’s a real honour to have our work recognised by STS-AIChE.  It was a privilege to work alongside Sam Mannan, who was a dear friend as well as a colleague.


“A month after the paper was published, my wife and I welcomed our second son, who we named Sam, after Dr Mannan.”


Discussing the achievement, James McNay, Micropack Managing Director, said: “We congratulate William on the success of his work alongside Dr Mannan.


“William’s STS-AIChE award is testament to his hard work and dedication, as well as the expertise that he brings to his role.”


William received a plaque commemorating the achievement, whilst Dr Mannan’s family accepted a plaque on his behalf.


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