The 31st edition of the Chemical Engineering Seminar Series (JEQ) focused on knowledge, opportunities and innovation. The event took place from 12th to 16th March, at IST congress centre, and addressed several topics: the challenges faced by the Millennial generation, innovation and revolution in industry, energy concerns and global engineering. “The audience increased substantially this year, we wanted to reach students within and beyond Técnico community, that’s why we organised technical visits to some industries. A pitch was also included in this year’s edition”, says Telmo Andrade, a member of JEQ’s organising committee.
Björn Dietrich, researcher at BASF AG, Paul Mathias, technology director at Fluor Corporation, Jeffrey Amelse, researcher at the University of Aveiro and Luís Mira Amaral, from the Portuguese Society of Innovation, were some of the speakers who attended this year’s edition, as well as some Técnico alumni. “We invite alumni because they can enhance students’ experience and, at the same time, they can provide advice about what should be done after graduation”, stressed Telmo Andrade.
On Thursday, March 15, the morning was dedicated to think about the future, the energy concerns and the potential solutions. According to engineer Carlos Alegria, from FTP Energia, “the advantage of investing in biomass plants has numerous benefits, ranging from environmental aspects to economic and social ones”, said the engineer. “These plants are located in the countryside, thus enhancing the creation of employment in these disadvantaged areas”, explained the engineer who was also professor at Técnico.
Usually this event is organised by 4th year students and, in this sense, several workshops were organised to show students the importance of discovering and developing soft skills. The pitch allowed students to contact with 18 different chemical engineering companies.
More than 1200 people attended the various activities during the four days. The participants had the opportunity to visit the Ribatejo Thermoelectric Power Station, Philip Morris Tobacco Company and the Estarreja Chemical Complex during the last day. “These visits are very important to us because they allow us to understand on site the practical applications of what we have learnt”, says Telmo Andrade.