National Academy of Inventors Class Recognizes UV/EB Innovators

RadTech recently announced its inaugural National Academy of Inventors Class. NAI is a nonprofit organization created to encourage invention and innovation. RadTech is the first nonacademic institution to host an NAI chapter, and its first inductees were selected by a nomination process, with nominations for the 2021 class of inductees now being accepted. For more information, visit and

The RadTech NAI Chapter 2020 inductees are as follows

Ben Curatolo, president of Light Curable Coatings, holds 41 US patents, including seven in UV technology. He has developed and commercialized a UV-curable industrial floor coating based on biologically renewable materials that has been recognized with a 2018 R&D 100 Award and an additional 2018 R&D 100 Special Recognition Merit Award for Green Technology.

Mike Dvorchak’s work with 100% UV cure oligomers and UV cure polyurethane dispersions coatings at Bayer Material Science (Covestro) and allnex helped result in more than 15 UV/EB US and international patents. He cites his current projects as the development of a shark-skin UV cure coating that could reduce drag for aerospace vehicles, a methane-sensing project using UV cured coatings on fiber optics for a University of Pittsburgh/Department of Energy Project and authoring a chapter for a UV cure textbook.

Mike Idacavage helped develop and commercialize a UV-curable, water-processable newspaper printing plate that became an industry standard. He developed several novel products based on Eastman Chemical’s water-dispersible polymers and also was responsible for new products related to a by-product, Lignin, from a $1 billion development program at Eastman. Idacavage also has been recognized as an inventor on patents assigned to his customers.

Jim Raymont has developed products to measure complex 3D shapes – both large and small – as part of the respected professionals at EIT Instruments. He has worked extensively with UV suppliers, customers and potential customers to help them better understand UV measurement and process control.

Special inductees represent long-term contributions to the technology, academia and emerging innovations.

Emeritus: Tony Berejka developed the radiation-processed corrosion protection for below-grade sections of the Alyeska Pipeline in 1975. Today, it remains the single largest radiation cure project ($124 million) and still is good condition after 45 years. Berejka has served as a consultant to the National Academies and its operating arm, the National Research Council, and to the International Atomic Energy Agency. Most recently, he reviewed a textbook on radiation chemistry and its industrial uses for a European group.

Academic: Vijay Mannari is a distinguished professor, Polymers and Coatings Technology, and director, Coatings Research Institute, at Eastern Michigan University. His research group has developed and customized coating materials derived from sustainable resources, enabling this technology to be Green + Green. Mannari’s contributions in UV-initiated crosslinking systems using photo-acid/photo-base has not only expanded cure chemistries (sol-gel, Michael-Addition) but has opened possibilities for high-performance and corrosion-resistant coatings.

Start-up: New Innovations: Henry Bilinsky invented direct contactless microfabrication (DCM) as a scalable method of printing functional microstructures out of UV-curable materials. Shark-skin inspired “riblet” surfaces, printed with DCM, have demonstrated a 7% drag reduction, and Bilinsky’s company, MicroTau, has won contracts to develop this technology for the US Air Force. MicroTau is working to develop functional materials inspired by nature – including anti-fouling, anti-bacterial, optical and superhydrophobic properties – using UV-curable coatings by micro-patterning with DCM technology.