Wyoming chemist receives award for improving asphalt manufacturing process

June 13, 2002

Chemist A. Troy Pauli of the Western Research Institute in Laramie, Wyo., will be honored June 20 by the world's largest scientific society for developing a new tool used in asphalt mixing and petroleum refining. He will receive a 2002 Industrial Innovation Award at the American Chemical Society's Northwest regional meeting in Spokane, Wash.

"Even in this multidisciplinary age, the individual investigator is crucial, the creative process heroic and inspiring," said Eli Pearce, president of the American Chemical Society. "Those who initially probe the unknown alone will ultimately serve as catalysts for development of the products, materials and technologies that advance civilization in the 21st century."

Pauli has developed a new tool, called the automated flocculation titrimeter (AFT), that analyzes the stability and performance of asphalts made with mixtures of heavy oils and petroleum residues. Petroleum refiners can maximize the amount of distillate oil they recover by using the device to measure the amount of "coke" -- a destructive residue -- formed when the large, heavy hydrocarbons in oil are broken down into the smaller, lighter molecules of gasoline and other chemicals.

The American Chemical Society's Industrial Innovation Awards recognize individuals and teams whose discoveries and inventions contribute to the commercial success of their companies and enhance our quality of life.

A. Troy Pauli is a lead scientist at the Western Research Institute. He received his B.S. in chemistry from the University of Wyoming in 1994. He's currently pursuing a Ph.D. in chemistry at the University of Wyoming. He resides in Cheyenne, Wyo.

EDITOR'S NOTE: The winner will present a 20-minute talk about his work on Thursday, June 20, from 4:30-5:30 p.m. If you would like to attend the awards banquet or presentation, please contact the person listed above.

American Chemical Society

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