Expert Details

Expert in Portland-Based Building Materials, Particularly Cellulose Fiber-Reinforced Cement and Composites

Expert ID: 722857 Australia

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Expert M. Expert has long experience in the selection of material and proportions of cellulose fiber reinforced cement composites. The most commonly used of these composites are manufactured on modified paper machinery in the Hatschek process. This combines wood pulp and Portland cement and other ingredients depending on the method chosen to cure the cement. Where such composites are cured at low temperatures (100C or less) then they usually include synthetic fibers compatible with cement (such as PVA fibers) and small amounts of filler such as ground limestone, clay etc. The cellulose fibers allow the manufacture of the composites on Hatschek machinery while the PVA fibers produce the required strength in the final composite. If the composite is to be autoclave cured (at temperatures around 180C) then synthetic fibers cannot be used as they are destroyed by the alkalinity of the cement and the high temperatures and ground silica sand is added to the cement along with other minerals reactive to the cement to form the matrix. The cellulose fiber in the autoclaved mixes provides the strength of the final composite and allows it to be manufactured on the paper machinery. Expert developed the original formulations for autoclaved cellulose fiber cement and has considerable experience in evaluation of their long-term performance in external environments. He has contributed to the development of coatings for use with fiber cements.

Expert has some 30 years’ experience with Portland cement and concrete products. He has worked in the manufacture of concrete roof tiles, concrete masonry bricks and blocks, concrete pipes, precast concrete, cement based coatings and patterning and in the manufacture of Portland cement itself. His experience has been directed to problem solving in the manufacturing processes, field performance of the products, and testing and product standards. He has considerable experience in the management of production for a variety of concrete products.

Expert has been involved in all aspects of manufacture of cellulose fiber cement composites. This experience has included commissioning of a new fiber cement production plant to manufacture 200 million square feet per year capacity. He was involved from the start of construction of the plant to its commissioning and daily running. He developed the commissioning plan, was a major contributor to the training of operators and set up the quality assurance and testing. He also was involved with the negotiation with suppliers of raw materials and consumables. The plant had commercial grade product within six weeks of the first runs of product from the Hatschek machine. Expert has also been involved with the construction and commissioning of a plant to manufacture sawdust cement blocks and extruded panels.

Expert has been involved with the development of special wood pulp fibers for cellulose fiber cement. He was instrumental in the development of the specifications for softwood pulps for cellulose fiber cement and has worked with pulp suppliers in North America, New Zealand, and Russia.


Expert provided assistance with the review of a test program to develop fiber for fiber cement composites. He assisted a paper and pulp company to set up and interpret the results of an evaluation program to select softwood pulp for fiber cement composites. This included providing advice on the chemistry of cement hydration in autoclave when ground silica is present in the mix and the effect of the presence of wood pulp on these reactions, advice on appropriate specimen manufacturing methods and test methods, assistance in training operators, technical evaluation, and interpretation of the results of the testing. Expert prepared documentation to assist the relocation of a office equipment factory. He spent 10 weeks in documenting all of the manufacturing procedures for the manufacture of wire basket and shelves prior to the removal of the production facility to remote location. All of the drawings were checked for accuracy and the operating procedures for the manufacture of various components were observed, photographed, and written down in a form such that it would have been quite easy to adopt an ISO 9000 quality system. Expert is assisting with the conversion of an asbestos cement manufacturing facility to autoclaved cellulose cement. He is providing technical advice to the contractor undertaking the conversion. This includes advice on the principles of operation of an autoclaved plant, selection of raw materials and materials processing within the facility, layout of plant to provide efficient operation of the factory, detailed process design and evaluation of equipment, selection and purchase of major items of equipment including autoclaving, commissioning of the plant, provision of operating procedures, and quality control measures.He gave expert advice in a patent litigation. He provided advice on prior art on a patent for cutting of fiber cement. The advice resulted in the denial of a patent and the dropping of a lawsuit around that patent. Expert provided technical advice to a housing association. He served as a paid member of a housing association technical committee and acted as the representative on Australian standards on behalf of the association. Advice covered all matters relating to building materials, building products such as boards, bricks and blocks, concrete, and coatings.

Education

Year Degree Subject Institution
Year: 1970 Degree: Dip. Tech. Sci. (Credit) Subject: Chemistry and Chemical Engineering Institution: NSW Insititute of Technology, Sydney
Year: 1973 Degree: B. Applied Science Subject: Chemistry and Chemical Engineering Institution: University of Technology, Sydney
Year: 1986 Degree: M. Applied Science Subject: Physics and Materials Institution: University of Technology, Sydney

Work History

Years Employer Title Department Responsibilities
Years: 2001 to Present Employer: Undisclosed Title: Investment Manager Department: ANU Connect Responsibilities: Expert is responsible for the commercialization of the University's intellectual property in the physical sciences area.
Years: 2001 to 2003 Employer: University of Technology, Sydney Title: Part-Time Tutor Department: Faculty of Engineering Responsibilities: He was responsible for presenting lectures and tutorials on Engineering Management and Project Management.
Years: 1997 to 2000 Employer: Fortra Fiber Cement Title: Technical Director Department: Production Division Responsibilities: Expert was responsible for the startup, commissioning and running of a 200 million-square-foot per year fiber cement production plant. He oversaw the technical development of the plant from the beginning of construction until the completion of operations. He was responsible for the purchase of all of the major raw materials and consumables. He supervised quality control and the testing laboratory, accreditation of the product, evaluation, and dealing with customer complaints as well as supervision of compliance with environmental matters and safety within the plant.
Years: 1996 to 1997 Employer: Hume Cemboard Malaysia Title: General Manager R&D Department: Research and Development Responsibilities: He was responsible for the supervision of research and development in three separate laboratories in different locations. He was responsible for R&D for asbestos cement, cellulose-reinforced cement, and cement-bonded wood particleboard.
Years: 1993 to Present Employer: Undisclosed Title: Managing Director Department: Responsibilities: He is the owner and managing director of this company, which provides advice to the building materials products industry. Advice can be provided on most matters related to the performance of cement and concretes but specific advice is provided for cellulose and wood cement composites.
Years: 1993 to 1996 Employer: Brown Cooke Industries Pty Ltd. Title: Director and Part Owner Department: Responsibilities: Expert was the part owner of this company supplying formulated pigments and stencils for stencil patterned and colored concrete. He was responsible for all aspects of the business including production, marketing, and distribution of products.
Years: 1980 to 1993 Employer: James Hardie Industries, Ltd. Title: Research Manager Department: Fibre Cement, Research and Development Department Responsibilities: He was responsible for supervision of the research into raw materials and product development of cellulose fiber cement building sheets. He was also responsible for the supervision and review of all of the quality data for the fiber cement division.

International Experience

Years Country / Region Summary
Years: 1996 to 1997 Country / Region: Malaysia Summary: Expert was General Manager R&D for Hume Cemboard. His work was as described in the employment section but included obtaining accreditation of the companies products in Australia so that they could be exported and used readily in Australia. He also was closely associated with several research projects carried out in conjunction with local universities.
Years: 1997 to 2000 Country / Region: U.S.A. Summary: He was Technical Director for Fortra Fiber Cement in Waxahachie Texas. Please see his work experience for details.
Years: 2004 to 2014 Country / Region: Thailand Summary: Expert is involved in the conversion of an asbestos cement plant to autoclaved fiber cement. This also involves the acquisition of autoclave and pressure equipment from South Africa.
Years: 2004 to 2014 Country / Region: Brazil Summary: He is involved in assisting a company to introduce the manufacture of autoclaved flat fiber cement.

Career Accomplishments

Associations / Societies
Expert is a member of the Royal Australian Chemical Institute, American Institute of Chemical Engineering, and American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Licenses / Certifications
He is a Chartered Chemist in Australia.
Professional Appointments
Expert was the General Secretary of the Australia New Zealand Association for the Advancement of Science (ANZAAS) in 1989, and was Chairman of the NSW Division of ANZAAS from 1984-1989.
Publications and Patents Summary
He has two patents and five publications in the area of fiber cement and its testing.

Additional Experience

Expert Witness Experience
As an expert witness in a patent litigation, Expert provided advice on prior art on a patent for cutting of fiber cement. The advice resulted in the denial of a patent and the dropping of a lawsuit around that patent. As an expert witness for a building failure, he worked with the lawyers to provide a defense in a case where his employer was enjoined in a lawsuit. The lawsuit was never taken to court.
Training / Seminars
Expert has developed and presented seminars on: R&D Management;
IP Identification, Protection and Management; and Project Management. He has taught management at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels.
He developed and wrote all of the basic operator training materials for manufacture of fiber cement. He has also taught concrete technology for trade students.
Vendor Selection
Expert has located vendors and negotiated contracts for the supply of raw materials and consumables for the manufacture of fiber cement. One supply contract resulted in annual savings of approximately $1 million and another in savings of several hundred thousand dollars. He also has located suppliers and negotiated contracts for the purchase of several large pieces of manufacturing equipment including ball mills, autoclaves, and boilers.
Marketing Experience
He has worked with several building material accreditation agencies in Australia and the U.S. (ICBO) to have fiber cement sheet materials accepted in these countries.
Other Relevant Experience
Expert has several years of experience in the startup of companies and the transfer of technology from academic environments to the commercial sector. This has included starting two companies of his own, being involved with the startup of a $65 million fiber cement facility, and three companies originating from a university.

Language Skills

Language Proficiency
Italian Expert is reasonably fluent in reading and writing Italian.

Fields of Expertise

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