Photo of Dan Moldovan, Technical Service Team Lead

Meet Our Pro

Dan Moldovan

Technical Service Team Lead

As the construction of its new polyethylene plant in Monaca, Pennsylvania continues, Shell Polymers has been hiring a team of industry experts, aka Polymer Pioneers and Polymer Pros, with proven track records in polymers. In this article, Technical Service Team Lead Dan Moldovan explains how the new applications hall will revolutionize polyethylene processing for Shell Polymers’ customers.

Close Access to Technical Expertise

The new Shell Polymers plant is in the northeast of the country, conveniently located within 700 miles of a majority of plastics converter companies. According to Dan, this closeness will bring value for customers in a variety of ways. “Being near polyethylene processors means deliveries will be more reliable because products travel a shorter distance,” he says. “Crucially, it also means we can work more closely with customers, and we’ll do this in the application hall.”

The 86,000-square-foot application hall will house commercial-scale conversion equipment. This includes three blown film lines, two blow molding machines with multilayer and monolayer capabilities, pipe extrusion, and injection molding. This will also be the home of over 50 industry experts known as Shell’s “Polymer Pioneers” and “Polymer Pros.”

“Customers will be able to visit the application hall to work hand-in-hand with our experts to solve technical issues, and also interface with suppliers and use the latest fabrication technologies to test potential new products,” Dan explains.

“The most enjoyable part of my job is working to help our customers have the best product for their applications. There is nothing better than to present a new technology or a product to a customer and see their eyes light up with excitement.”

Dan Moldovan

“We are there to listen to our customers’ needs and help to address them, either by assisting with their processing or making sure they have the correct product for their application. In some cases, we will work with the customers to develop a new product for their applications.”

Dan’s Top-Four Tips for Customers

  • Monitoring

    To troubleshoot your process, you must be able to monitor it. Monitoring outputs will help with troubleshooting and prevent issues from arising.

  • Ensure the product is the best fit for the application

    In some cases, an alternative product might be more suitable. The Shell Polymers team has the technical knowledge and experience to advise and recommend a better solution.

  • Know your options

    Our application hall will provide a place for customers to run resin trials, which will enable them to determine how Shell Polymers’ products will compare to their current products without shutting down their own equipment.

  • Query the quality of the resin you receive

    Ask your supplier how rigorously it monitors its production processes and the product quality and variability it achieves.

A Polymer Pioneer with more than 40 years of industry experience

Dan’s involvement in polymer advancement began when he helped develop the first linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE) extrusion coating. Following this, he had the opportunity to work with the pioneers of high-temperature gel permeation chromatography who developed it during the 1960s. With this gel permeation chromatography differential viscometer, users could obtain the absolute molecular weight of polyethylene products and determine the amount of long-chain branching. Dan also worked with colleagues to develop analytical temperature rising elution fractionation, which enables polymer developers to rapidly determine the branching distribution of LLDPE plastic products.

Dan’s technical service experience extends across the USA and Canada, where he had the opportunity to work with many of the world’s largest injection molding customers.

His breadth of industry experience helped Dan develop numerous bimodal injection molding products that addressed converter challenges such as longer cycle times and these products are still being sold today. These products were also based on dual-reactor technology and were some of the first bimodal products to be introduced to the polyethylene market.