As one of the world’s largest polymer companies, Covestro’s business activities focus on manufacturing high-tech polymer materials and developing innovative solutions for products used in a wide range of industries.
For more than 50 years, products enhancing a wide range of industries, sports and leisure, cosmetics, health and the chemical industry itself, have improved the lives of local and global communities.
The company’s largest North American plant, the Covestro Baytown Industrial Park, meets these needs with three main production units. The site started production of polyurethanes in 1972, followed by production of polycarbonates in 1975. Coatings and adhesives followed in 1976.
“In coatings and adhesives, we have multiple manufacturing areas, and I’m the plant manager for a product called Desmodur W (DesW),” said Victor Turrion, plant manager for Covestro Baytown Desmodur W. .
Turrion’s solid education, along with solid hands-on industrial experience, prepared him well for his career at Covestro. His journey to Covestro began in Spain in 2009, where he earned a Master of Science in Electronic Engineering from Rovira Virgili University.
In 2010, Turrion started his professional career at Bayer (precursor to Covestro) as a project engineer in process control technology in coatings and adhesives in Zona Franca, an industrial area located in Barcelona, Spain. Three years later, Covestro hired him for an international coatings and adhesives assignment in Baytown, Texas.
After several years in the Process Controls Technology Group, Turrion assumed his current role as Plant Manager in the DesW unit at the Baytown site.
DesW is a liquid cycloaliphatic diisocyanate; its products are used in coatings for flooring, roofing and textile applications, such as cast elastomers, potting and encapsulating compounds, optical products, medical products, adhesives and sealants.
, adhesives and sealants. “I coordinate, support and facilitate safety, quality and environmental systems for the CA DesW manufacturing unit, including handling customer complaints, service complaints and compliance requirements,” said Turrion. .
To properly execute this position, Turrion must harness strong problem-solving and interpersonal skills to work and lead diverse teams to achieve their goals. Leadership and communication skills, as well as project management experience are other talents that help Turrion do his job successfully.
Like most industries, Covestro is emerging from the COVID-19 pandemic and adapting to challenges including: more people working from home and learning to balance the new way of life, while maintaining safe and reliable.
“The idea was actually born out of necessity. We had to find new ways to carry out our security checks in the face of coronavirus restrictions and social distancing.
Covestro has long focused on safety in production processes, factories and transportation. Recently, the Baytown site was recognized for its safety performance with the Distinguished Safety Service Award, as well as the “Best in Texas” award, both given by the Texas Chemical Council.
Engaged communities are enriched communities
Through a range of employee volunteer service projects, the company has continued its support of community betterment for the past 50 years.
Covestro and its employee partners also support other organizations’ events, which Turrion says strengthens Covestro’s relationship with the Baytown community.
“Baytown employees are passionate about giving back to our community – which is industry-centric,” Turrion explained. “We continue to carry a rich tradition of good corporate citizenship throughout the region, and the city is known for its strong sense of community.”
When he’s not busy onsite ensuring his operators and manager are working safely and achieving Covestro’s vision of community involvement, Turrion himself is actively engaged in volunteering with non-profit cancer organizations, and United Way of Greater Baytown and Chambers County.
The increasingly colloquial phrase “Industry 4.0” refers to the exponential growth in the intelligent interconnection of people, machines and processes using advanced information and communication technologies. Recognizing that the fourth industrial revolution is in full swing, Covestro intends to become a “smart factory” by embracing Industry 4.0.
Covestro aims to reap the benefits of this ongoing digital transformation, while continuing to be best in class in security by having zero security incidents.
“Zero security incidents are possible,” Turrion said. “Our goal is to achieve the next level of digitization so that we can produce even more safely, efficiently, sustainably… in a more customer-focused way in the future.”
Turrion knows the benefits of using IoT devices; predictive analyzes driven by artificial intelligence software are almost unlimited and make maintenance strategies more reliable.
Turrion also appreciates the fact that, overall, data-driven decisions enable more efficient allocation of maintenance resources and new technologies. Mobile maintenance or online maintenance scheduling improve maintenance time on tools
As he further ponders what the future holds for Covestro, Turrion emphasized that the company strives to achieve several ideals, as outlined in its mission statement. Covestro strives to imbue its partners and stakeholders with one purpose, “to make the world brighter”, as well as to inspire innovation and drive growth through cost-effective products and technologies that benefit to society and reduce the impact on the environment.
Turrion noted that the Texas Sunset Advisory Commission is currently reviewing the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) report.
“Covestro supports Texas’ retention of an environmental regulatory agency and would encourage the legislature to pass a bill ensuring the state agency would continue to operate,” he said.
The company is also strongly committed to upholding the industry’s sense of social responsibility by becoming a fully circular economy.
“A circular economy enables a climate-neutral future and is key to resource conservation, climate and environmental protection,” Turrion concluded. “Plastics are a driver for implementing a circular economy, and we want to go fully circular. We want to help make the circular economy the global guiding principle and embed it throughout the company.
For more information, visit covestro.com.