International politics, the skills gap, IIoT adoption and more are top of mind.
by Pumps & Systems staff
January 11, 2019

What equipment/processes are most vulnerable to cybercrimes?
“Historically, on-premise servers seem to be the most vulnerable. Cloud-based data is often more protected than private servers. According to the The New York Times, “‘Cloud’ data is stored on hard drives (much the way data is usually stored). And yes, it’s probably more secure than conventionally stored data.” While data being looted and personal information becoming endangered has been much- discussed, “most of those attacks hit traditional servers, though. None of the most catastrophic hacks have been on the big public clouds,” the article stated. However, vigilance is required.”
Kevin Clark
Vice President, Fluke Accelix

What keeps you up at night?
“The thought of a potential trade war worldwide combined with a downturn in business is a concern. As we know, no one wins in a total trade war. Both sides seem to sink their heels in and ultimately everyone gets hurt. ...There is always the threat that there will be a downturn at the same time as a trade war. While this is not the case, it is something that keeps me up and makes me think: what if?”
Glenn Wieczorek
Managing Director, North America, Tsurumi Pump

“At this point, we have a controversial president, to say the least, and I actually think in some ways that he’s doing some good things. I saw an article about the tariffs and China and there may be some good things. ... We have some forces that are making trade more complicated and painting America in bad light. International trade could be disrupted by the impediments and damaged relationships.”
Trey Walters
President and Founder, Applied Flow Technology

“Lead pipes. Aging water infrastructure. Funding. How this will affect our children and grandchildren. It’s rather frightening, but we’re optimistic with the number of organizations working on research, education and advocacy to advance the industry.”
Meghan Jensen
Vice President Marketing & Communications, The Water Council

What are the biggest challenges facing power generation in 2019?
“The biggest challenges are the changing landscape of power gen options and the impact of regulations on the ability to optimize power generation portfolios. Whether they are large or small organizations, the ability of power generation assets and controls to adapt to market needs will be critical for success.”
Brent Ward
Solutions Expert, Voith Digital Ventures, North America

What are professionals doing to control chemical processing costs?
“One area of improvement is looking at process equipment that is inherently more energy efficient due to superior design. As an example: some legacy process pumps require multiple utilities to function including electrical power, air and water. By selecting modern engineered solutions, an end user can realize energy savings across several utility requirements. The resulting ROI can be achieved in a short period of time while also reducing attendant maintenance costs.”
Russell Merritt
Marketing Manager, Watson Marlow

How do you expect automation to affect the process industries workforce in the next five years?
“Automation is likely to increase in all industries, including process industries. Within the next five years, automation is likely to supplement humans rather than replace. For example, systems will increasingly be able to suggest how workers should prioritize time spent by pointing to areas in the system that are most likely to cause problems, like motors that are failing or pipes that are leaking.”
Jake Wysocki
Product Manager, Software & IoT, Industrial Controls Division, Eaton

What will the new infrastructure bill mean to water/wastewater?
“Most likely we will not see much impact in 2019 due to the long project cycle from start to completion that takes place in water and wastewater. That being said, investment by the federal government— Environmental Protection Agency—for water/wastewater infrastructure projects is very positive. Many municipalities have aging plants, piping networks, pumping stations, outdated control systems and communications that need to be overhauled and updated. Plants are having to meet tighter permit levels, which requires additional process instrumentation and controls.”
Alan Vance
Environmental Industry Manager, Endress+Hauser

“We haven’t seen any impact from this yet, but we’re hopeful that with expanded dollars toward our really aging infrastructure, it will all be positive. ... Globally, it’s highly regional. Places like China are putting a lot more effort around environmental issues—getting clean water, getting clean air has become a priority and we expect to continue to see that level of investment as they catch up in their environmental protection regulations.”
Greg Guard
President, JWC Environmental