HATTIESBURG, MS - The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) announced program plans for the 31st Annual Waterborne, High-Solids and Powder Coatings Symposium, scheduled for Feb. 18-20, 2004, in New Orleans.

Highlights will include a series of keynote presentations, a special technical session on pigments and a Technology Showcase. The symposium also is moving to a new location, the New Orleans Marriott hotel, located adjacent to New Orleans' French Quarter.

The symposium program will get under way on Feb. 18 with an introduction by Shelby F. Thames, who led the symposium's development into a major international coatings conference and is now president of USM. Keynote-session speakers will include Eric J. Amis, chief of the Polymers Division at the National Institute of Standards and Technology; Panos I. Kordomenos, Global Technology director for DuPont Performance Coatings; David Diehl, PPG Industries Inc. manager of Corporate Technology Initiatives; and Ron K. Litton, retired from Eastman Chemical Co. In all, the symposium program will include 41 presentations on a range of topics.

Also planned in conjunction with the symposium are four short courses scheduled for Feb. 16-17. The courses are "Design of Experiments for Coatings Scientists," "Modern Coatings Technology," "Reformulating to Waterborne Coatings," and "Water-Soluble/Waterborne Coatings."

More information on the symposium and short courses is available from the University of Southern Mississippi, phone 601/266.4475; e-mail waterborne@ usm.edu, website www.psrc.usm.edu/waterborne.