Since 1999, Thermal Kinetics has been providing full – service process equipment supply, engineering, development, and design services. We offer advanced energy-saving solutions, patented technological integration, and sophisticated process plant development – proudly matching each of our customers’ specific needs with optimum productivity and profitability.

At the forefront of new techniques and technologies, Thermal Kinetics is dedicated to providing environmentally friendly, energy-saving solutions. With an emphasis on respect, teamwork, and timeliness, our innovation-driven and solutions-focused team has the industry insight and experience to guide your project from start to finish.

Mission Statement

We solve a diverse range of difficult heat/mass transfer process applications, while promoting sustainability, excellence, and value for our customers.

Sustainability Statement

Thermal Kinetics is committed to providing process equipment solutions that help sustain and conserve environmental resources.

Our renewable fuels initiatives offer major energy conservation benefits to our clients and support energy independence for the USA.

Testimonial

“In 2006 Calgren Renewable Fuels, LLC (Calgren) contracted with Lurgi, Inc. (Lurgi) for a turnkey ethanol plant to be built in Pixley, CA. Exercising the design flexibility afforded them under the EPC contract, Lurgi turned to Thermal Kinetics Engineering, PLLC (TKE) for engineering and procurement of the distillation, dehydration and evaporation (DDE) portion of the plant.

As construction, commissioning and startup of the ethanol plant were not without incident, Calgren and the main EPC contracting entities found it necessary to resort to arbitration to resolve their differences. Throughout that ordeal and even though TKE had no contractual obligation to Calgren, TKE stood by its DDE design and provided Calgren any assistance required.

Calgren’s Pixley plant is among the most efficient in the ethanol industry. Much of the credit
goes to TKE’s energy efficient design. When Calgren has had the opportunity to benchmark its plant against others in the industry, the comparison has been favorable. For example, under California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard numerous ethanol producers have filed for low carbon intensity sub-pathways. Several of these filings reveal low overall energy consumption. Calgren’s energy consumption is significantly better than any of them.

Energy efficiency is frequently achieved through process integration and TKE’s DDE design is no exception. But highly integrated process are sometimes hard to troubleshoot. In every instance in which Calgren has been baffled by DDE process issues and found it necessary to reach out to TKE for assistance, they have responded with sage and knowledgeable advice.

We would not hesitate to recommend that TKE be considered for similar work at other facilities.”

– Lyle J. Schlyer, President of Calgren Renewable Fuels

“Thermal Kinetics provided an excellent solution for our unique facility needs. Their systems are well designed and equipment is robust. Their systems met or exceeded all anticipated performance and, after over a year of operations, we continue to realize additional capabilities. They were a great business partner on our project.”

– Jeff Zueger, Chief Executive Officer of Midwest AgEnergy Group

Meet Our Team:

Christopher Brown, P.E.: President

Chris Brown has been a leading figure in the world of chemical process engineering for 40 years. Starting out as an applications engineer, Chris worked and learned his way to owning one of the premier process equipment solutions providers in the country.

An expert in renewable fuels, he has several patents that substantially reduce the energy consumption during the ethanol production process. Always focused on complete customer satisfaction, Chris takes a personal approach with his customers and is involved from the inception of a project to final commissioning and follow-up.

Key Career Milestones:

  • Director of Engineering for two major equipment systems suppliers from 1992 to 1998.
  • Start-up and operation of four successful engineering and equipment systems companies.
  • Managed several key divisions/departments over the years, with full responsibility for sales, marketing, P&L, strategic planning, and customer service. Revamped and upgraded facilities while implementing a strong project management discipline.
  • Inventor of several energy-saving technology patents that are used in the renewable fuels industry.

Patents:

  • Ethanol distillation with distillers soluble solids recovery apparatus
  • Improved adsorption process for dehydration of alcohol
  • Use of Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) for water removal from a wet methanol stream
  • Production of Dry Alcohol: uses synthesis gas and water-gas shift reaction to remove water from azeotropic ethanol co-producing methanol, hydrogen, and heat

Carl Schade, CPM: Procurement Director

Carl has over 40 years of experience in the recommendation and procurement of strategic parts and components for all facets of process equipment fabrication. He has developed outstanding relationships with many prominent vendors and is always looking out for the best interests of customers.

Key Career Milestones:

  • Development and implementation of Supply Chain Management business processes and procedures to ensure continuous improvement.
  • Consistently achieving significant annual savings through vendor selection, dual sourcing, and product evaluation.
  • Several high-level supervision positions that directed the flow of materials, guided vendors, and trained internal staff on best purchasing practices.

Expertise:

  • Supply chain management/processes
  • Contract negotiations
  • Material management
  • Quality assurance
  • Accounting

Charles Cromwell: Senior Process Engineer

With a superior ability to tackle the most difficult of thermal design challenges, Charles brings over 26 years of heat transfer and project management expertise to Thermal Kinetics. Charles has managed several intricate process engineering projects, with responsibilities including process design, pricing, components sourcing, and customer training.

Key Career Milestones:

  • Product line manager, responsible for both engineering and sales at Bos-Hatten/Alco Products/Nitram Energy.
  • Established a regimented heat transfer training program for application engineers.
  • Expert in the design of shell and tube and hairpin heat exchangers. Also helped write the API 663 specification for hairpin heat exchangers.

Expertise:

  • Thermal design and the use of sophisticated software
  • Distillation column design
  • Process simulation
  • Compress, BJAC design programs
  • Lean enterprise
  • Applications training

Christopher Spengler: Process Engineer

Since graduating from the University at Buffalo with honors, Chris has demonstrated natural abilities in the analysis of complex chemical thermal design, the processing of distillation computer simulation runs, and locating potential problem areas in process equipment design.

Key Career Milestones:

  • Design team member for a bioethanol plant with a capacity of 70MM gallons per year.
  • Managed pilot plant project to determine crystal growth and point of precipitation.
  • Produced photoluminescent silicon nanoparticles in Pyrolysis research lab.

Expertise:

  • Bioethanol plant design
  • Pyrolysis research
  • CHEMCAD process simulation
  • Heat and mass balance calculations
  • Separations technology

Gregory Furgala: Senior Designer

Greg brings over 17 years of technical design experience to the Thermal Kinetics team. He has the ability to guide his customers in the strategic placement of components and process equipment, saving valuable floor space and allowing for the coordination of pre-piping before the arrival of a skid.

Key Career Milestones:

  • Lead designer for a large mineral company project that included waste recovery and a new, sophisticated bagging process.
  • Designed piping layouts, pump ducts, heat exchangers, vessel outlines, general arrangements and details utilizing 3D modeling for multiple air separation plants.
  • Developed piping routing plans for several hydrogen plant systems.

Expertise:

  • AutoCAD 2016
  • Autodesk Plant 3D 2016
  • Autodesk Inventor 2016
  • Bentley AutoPlant V8i
  • ProSteel V8i
  • MicroStation
  • CADKey

Kevin Green, P.E.: Senior Project Manager

Kevin brings 38 years of chemical engineering and project management experience to lead technically diverse projects. As a senior project manager, he provides the day-to-day insight and guidance on a variety of assignments necessary for successful, on-time completion. His ability to work in the field solidifies the concept of “Total Project Management”.

Key Career Milestones:

  • Lead engineer in assisting several Ethanol plants start-up and helping existing plants achieve maximum output by using his abilities to “tune” the process.
  • Lead engineer for a sulfuric acid evaporator system, including complete project management and customer interface.
  • Converted single-fuel process heaters and steam boiler to duel fuel capability, saving $350K annually.

Expertise:

  • Project management
  • Field start-up/equipment tuning/troubleshooting
  • Plant design
  • Pilot plant performance analysis
  • Engineering manager
  • Product development

Stephen Hussak: Marketing Manager

Stephen has 30 years of technical sales and marketing experience in a variety of manufacturing and entrepreneurial endeavors, including 10 years in plate and frame heat transfer. He currently manages the sales and marketing activities for Thermal Kinetics, providing strategic marketing guidance and internal process improvement, all with a complete focus on total customer satisfaction.

Key Career Milestones:

  • Six Sigma Black Belt, focusing on the streamlining of internal office logistics and project management consolidation to provide better customer response.
  • Developed special compress seal lubrication kit for one-time customer use in the field for pressure/vacuum sealing glands.
  • Managed one of the largest sanitary plate and frame projects at APV Crepaco. This project was for a major international beverage manufacturer.

Expertise:

  • Project management
  • Marketing planning/development
  • Heat transfer design
  • Customer-oriented solutions
  • Strategic planning

Tom Burkholder: Evaporation/Distillation Product Manager

With over 30 years in process design, technical sales, and project management, Tom has extensive experience working with intricate process equipment for chemical, industrial and sanitary applications. As the Evaporation and Distillation Product Manager for Thermal Kinetics, he provides day-to-day insight and guidance on projects, while working closely with his customers to ensure complete customer satisfaction.

Key Career Milestones:

  • Extensive background designing integrated distillation and evaporation packaged systems for North American based chemical and pharmaceutical clients.
  • Worked within cross-functional (Engineering, Q&A, Safety, Legal) development teams to design new products for one of the world’s largest food manufacturers.
  • Designed and managed the engineering design and equipment implementation for two (2) new products with sales of over $75MM/product.

Expertise:

  • Process engineering design/implementation
  • Project management
  • Heat transfer design
  • R&D team leader
  • Automation controls
  • Commissioning/start-up of complex systems
  • Retired U.S. Naval Officer