This year’s Hotbels conference attracted multiple representatives from 40 glass production facilities, in addition to delegates from 23 different organisations that supply essential services and products to the glass industry.
The highlight of each Hotbels event is the presentation of the Business & Technology United (BTU) Award. This annual award was established in 2007, giving distinguished recognition to an individual or a group that has contributed significantly to the evolution of Hotbels and education in the glass industry.
This year’s BTU Award was presented to Brian Naveken of Toledo Engineering Co Inc. Mr Naveken joined TECO in 1998 and transferred to its Technical Group in 2007, working as a Furnace Design Engineer ever since. He is a certified Manufacturing Technologist by the Society of Manufacturing Engineers and has been on the Board of Trustees for GMIC for 11 years. In addition, he is currently Chairman of the GPC Sustainability Symposium, to be held at the 2019 Conference on Glass Problems.
Part of the TECO Group of Companies, Toledo Engineering Co Inc offers total furnace capabilities in glass furnaces of all types, including glass plant equipment manufacturing. The company specialises in forehearth and working end technology, providing high quality industrial automation engineering services and custom control systems.
The TECO Group has been serving the world’s primary glass manufacturing industry since 1927. Its QE³ furnace design has been developed to improve furnace quality by lowering energy costs, emissions and extending furnace life. TECO has the capability to engineer and design furnaces for any type of glass production.
Brian Naveken joins a distinguished group of previous BTU Award recipients, including:
- C Philip Ross, Glass Industry Consulting International (2007).
- Michael A Nelson, Corhart Refractories (2008).
- Dr Douglas H Davis, Toledo Engineering Co (2009).
- John T Brown, Corning Inc and GMIC (2010).
- Michele Blackburn, Saint-Gobain SEFPRO (2011).
- Kevin Lievre, formerly Air Products (2012).
- Matthew Wheeler, RHI US Ltd (2013).
- The Verallia Group (2014).
- George Kopser, Hotwork-USA (2015).
- Roberto Cabrera, Vitro Vidrio Y Cristal (2016).
- David Boothe, Allstates Refractory Contractors (2017).
- HarbisonWalker International (2018).
In addition to Brian Naveken’s presentation on alternative furnace design, attendees had the opportunity to learn from an array of important speakers from CelSian Glass & Solar, Borton-Lawson Engineering, HarbisonWalker International, Magneco-Matrel, O-I Corp and John Brown from Corning Inc. Kevin Lievre, Fosbel Inc, also presented RapidBuild rebuild technology, a structural, modular solution to save glassmakers labour and downtime costs while benefiting from longer refractory life.