The Powder Coating Institute says innovative programming will be a key feature of its 2018 Technical Conference, held from March 12-15 2018, at the JW Marriott hotel in downtown Indianapolis, IN. With four days of powder coating education, tabletop exhibits, general sessions and social gatherings, this event is being praised as offering a perfect balance of training and networking for all powder coating professionals.  “We’ve worked hard this year to develop different programming that offers important information and ideas for the powder coating industry,” says PCI’s executive director Trena Benson. “We know we have a mix of newcomers and veterans that attend this event. We wanted to be sure to keep some of the valuable basic information, but we also wanted to branch out and offer some brand new sessions for the industry.” Featured sessions include: Raising the Quality Bar; Determining True Applied Costs; Building a Business Case & Planning for a New Finishing System Installation; Minding Your Business; Safety: It’s Everyone’s Responsibility; Creating A Comprehensive Finishing Specification; Troubleshooting Your Batch Powder Coating Operation; IIoT (Industrial Internet of Things); Advanced Automation and more. The event opens on Monday afternoon, March 12, with a lunch and tabletop exhibits featuring powder coating manufacturers, powder coating application equipment suppliers, system houses, chemical suppliers and the various services that support the powder coating industry. The technical program kicks off with a general session featuring Dr. Amber Selking who will discuss “Driving Consistent Performance Excellence.”  The rest of the event will consist of concurrent breakouts followed by a tabletop exhibit & reception.  Tuesday, March 13, begins with a general session and panel discussion featuring Michael Cravens, on the topic “Responsibilities and Liabilities for Powder Coaters,” followed by a mix of presentations and roundtable discussions.  Lunch in the Tabletop Exhibit Ballroom will give attendees a final chance to meet and talk with exhibitors.  There will also be an evening event at the Speedway Indoor Karting facility where attendees will have the opportunity to test their driving skills like Indy car champs while networking with other attendees. This event, transportation, dinner and refreshments are included with full conference registration.  On Wednesday, March 14, PCI’s Technical Conference program concludes with a talk from Matt Kirchner, “The Robots are Coming: IIoT, and Advanced Automation,” and a troubleshooting session. This general session will present information on how the fourth industrial revolution has changed the powder coating industry and what is on the horizon for all powder coaters. Beginning on Wednesday afternoon, PCI’s popular Powder Coating 101: Basic Essentials Workshop will begin. The workshop includes a day and a half of classroom instruction based on PCI’s Powder Coating: The Complete Finisher’s Handbook, an evening reception where attendees can interact with workshop presenters and attendees, and breakfast and lunch on day two. Attendees can select from a variety of registration options for the event: full technical conference, one-day technical conference; Tabletop Exhibits only; or the Powder Coating 101 Workshop. Those who select both the full conference and the Powder Coating 101 Workshop may take advantage of a 10 percent discount.