Dr. ESTELA ALEJANDRO
Glass Technology Manager
Vidrala SA, ES
Estela Alejandro, Ph.D., is the Glass Technology Manager at Vidrala Group. She obtained her Ph.D. degree in Physical Chemistry at University of the Basque Country (Spain). She has been the responsible of the Glass Technology department in Vidrala since 2002 and manages an international group of 7 people and 2 laboratories. She is the responsible of the glass technology for all the productive plants of Vidrala, which includes glass quality, raw materials and cullet quality, colour changes, R&D projects, etc. She has contributed with papers to international glass conferences, seminars and international glass journals. She has participated on behalf of her company in numerous consortium groups for research and development projects. She is part of the Glass Trend Board since 2021.
Standardization: A Powerful Tool to Achieve Excellence in Container Glass Technology
Standardization is a powerful tool for any industrial process; it reduces the variability of the processes, enhances the predictability, gives a more consistent and constant quality, and helps reducing waste. But standardization is not just a pure operational technique, it is also a culture that can transform the performance of a whole organization. A standardization culture delivers a collective way of working that, based on the application of the best practices, promotes a continuous improvement mindset, enables the capture and transfer of knowledge and expertise, supports the change and helps all stakeholder to contribute to and benefit from a shared value. As a process itself, glass technology is not alien to these benefits. Glass technology manages the raw materials used to produce the glass, that is, the material from which the manufactured products are made. Its location at the beginning of the glass manufacturing industrial process, together with the high complexity of glass formation process in the furnace, means that its impact contributes greatly to the performance of a production plant, so a correct and rigorous management of the glass technology stage is essential. Thus, a standardization of the glass management procedures can give a priceless opportunity to reduce glass quality losses and acquire knowledge very fast, leading the process to its operational excellence. This paper looks at how standardization culture and techniques can be applied successfully to the glass management of container production plants.