The WaterJet Technology Association-Industrial & Municipal Cleaning Association (WJTA-IMCA) welcomed 943 attendees representing 33 countries to the 2017 WJTA-IMCA Conference and Expo held October 25–27 at the Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, LA. The Conference/Expo is a unique event worldwide, and attendees travelled quite a distance to participate.
Eighty-nine exhibiting companies displayed waterjet and industrial cleaning supplies, equipment, systems and services, industrial vacuum trucks and hydro-excavators, and related services. The 2017 exhibit hall featured a number of new vendors, including international companies showcasing their equipment and services.
The pre-Conference Workshop, Waterjet Technology: Basics and Beyond, was held on Wednesday, October 25. Topics included the past, present and future of waterjet technology; fundamentals; equipment; UHP and abrasive cutting, cleaning, field cutting, surface preparation, sewer cleaning, and robotic applications; and safety.
The educational Boot Camp sessions covered a range of topics: operating and troubleshooting verified ground, surface preparation, waterblasting safety devices and use, updates to vacuum truck standards and DOT regulations, how industrial collaboration improves hydroblasting training and safety, understanding the power of vacuum, and an update on the status of the WJTA-IMCA hydroblasting certification.
End users discussed lessons learned from hydroblasting incidents and near misses during a panel discussion on Thursday, October 26. Panelists included James W. Ashmead, E.I. DuPont; Hans Borgt, The Dow Chemical Company; and Jeff Nyberg, HydroChemPSC. The panel discussion was moderated by Dana D. Moore, E.I. DuPont.
Live demonstrations included waterjet surface preparation, industrial vacuuming and air conveyance, robotically controlled and manual shotgunning systems, heat exchanger and tube cleaning, tank cleaning, advanced controls and automation, new pumps, sewer/pipe inspection and rehab, additional waterjet applications, and more.
Some of the world’s leading engineers and researchers shared the latest technological developments during conference paper presentations. Topics covered manufacturing technology; cavitation, pulsed and CO2 jets; waterblasting; and downhole and rock cutting.
Terydon, Inc., Navarre, OH, received the 2017 Safety Award in recognition of the company’s leadership and tireless efforts in creating and providing an innovative means of safety for the high pressure waterjet industry.
"Advancements of the Manufacturing Technology with High-Pressure Liquid CO2 Jets," authored by Patrick John and Eckart Uhlmann, Technische Universität Berlin, Berlin, Germany, received the 2017 Best Paper Award.
In addition to the show’s pronounced international participation, a highlight of this year’s Conference/Expo was the involvement from the end users – the facility/asset owners and customers of waterjet/industrial cleaning services. A major goal of WJTA-IMCA is to bring together manufacturers, contractors and end users for the betterment of the industry.
Another highlight was the focus on safety and efficiency from the manufacturers and contractors participating. Hands-on displays and live demos of robotics and automation, as well as improved manual hydroblasting equipment, afforded contractors and facility representatives the opportunity to see firsthand how the industry is evolving.
Thanks to the sponsors, exhibitors, and attendees. The 2017 Conference and Expo was a great success, with a great deal of excitement for the 2018 Expo.
WJTA-IMCA will return to the Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, November 1–2, for the 2018 Expo. New Orleans provides exciting options for entertaining and networking and raises the profile of the show internationally and around the United States. New Orleans provides an exciting, world-class destination while remaining in close proximity to the gulf coast industrial base.