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It is always something special if an idea from the team becomes reality

The Liquid Purification Technologies (LPT) Business Unit is one of the world’s leading suppliers of products for treating water and liquid media. With Lewatit® ion exchange resins and Lewabrane® reverse osmosis membrane elements, LPT offers its customers two premium technologies that perfectly complement each other. For example, while membrane technologies work cost-effectively with very salty water, in the case of low salt concentrations, fine purification down to the detection limit can be better implemented with ion exchangers. One of the best known applications for Lewatit ion exchangers is the Brita water filter.

What exactly is your job at LPT?

Michael Pies: I have global responsibility for production and technology in our business unit. We produce our ion exchangers in three plants in Germany and India. The membranes are manufactured in other production facilities. Reliable production is essential. We have the same standards all over the world, especially in safety. In order to improve occupational safety at LANXESS, the group initiated the Xact safety program in 2011 and gradually introduced it at all of its locations worldwide.
Together with the Production Managers and my team in Cologne, we ensure high plant uptime. It is especially important to work out new concepts to constantly improve productivity using the latest technology, and to cater for the growing demand for our products.

What makes your job so exciting?

Michael Pies: My job combines both chemical and technical tasks. As a chemist, I can also fully utilize my affinity with technology. We constantly cooperate with the plants, as well as with colleagues from Research, Marketing andthe central divisions. The international aspect of the job is the “icing on the cake”. I work with people with various nationalities and mentalities.

What was the greatest challenge up to now?

Michael Pies: It is always something special if an idea from the team becomes reality.
Our new plant in India is definitely one of the very special projects. When the task of setting up a new ion exchanger capacity in Asia was completed the first task was to look for a site in India. The choice was not easy. In India, the concept of a location for a chemical plant is considerably different. We decided on Jhagadia and set up a modern chemical plant there. In the meantime, this plant has become an integral part of our production.

What are your wishes for the future?

Michael Pies: Clean water is one of the central topics for the future.
Our aim is to make a contribution to this by increasing our capacities and making a definitive contribution to the state-of-the-art.

What do you do in your leisure time?

Michael Pies:When time allows, I love playing ice hockey and I also go kite surfing.

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