Vora inducted into the National Academy of Engineering

April 24, 2018 - By Kim Delker

Bipin Vora, who earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in chemical engineering from UNM in 1966 and 1967, respectively, has been inducted into the National Academy of Engineering.

He will be officially inducted at its annual ceremony in Washington, D.C., in September.

VoraAfter graduating from UNM, Vora went on to have a successful career in the petroleum refining and petrochemical industry, rising to a grade of UOP Corporate Fellow, the highest technical ladder position at UOP, a Honeywell company.

Vora retired from Honeywell UOP in 2006 and remained an advisor to the business until 2015.
During his 40-year career at Honeywell UOP, Vora led the development and commercialization of several technologies that improved process economics, lowered energy requirements and benefitted the environment.
Vora’s election to the Academy recognizes his development of catalytic process innovations that led to the commercialization of numerous breakthrough petrochemicals technologies.

He played a key role in the development of the detergent alkylation process, which makes raw material for household biodegradable laundry and dishwashing detergents. He has been also credited with development of propane dehydrogenation for propylene production and conversion of methanol to ethylene and propylene, which are raw material for production of polymers and plastics. He has 93 U.S. patents, over 200 international patents, and over 150 publications. A recipient of 2013 Platts Global Lifetime Achievement award, Vora has also received the Distinguished Service Award from the Fuels and Petrochemicals Division of AIChE, the AIChE Process Development Award, the AIChE Chemical Engineering Practice Award, the ACS National Award in Industrial Chemistry, ChemTech-India Technology Leadership award and is an AIChE Fellow.

Although he retired in 2006, Vora remained active as a consultant at UOP until 2015. Now in addition to some consulting in the industry, he mentors chemical engineering students at University of Illinois at Chicago. In 2017 he was a visiting professor at Nirma University and Pandit Deendayal Petroleum University in India, as well as at IIT, Chicago. He and his wife, Kalpi, reside in Naperville, a suburb of Chicago. He plans to continue these activities in 2018 and beyond.

Vora remains active in with the School of Engineering, serving on the Alumni Leadership Board. He was a recipient of the Distinguished Alumni Award in 1999.