Faces of Lubricants: Scott Cheng

Apr 05, 2019

Principal chemist, Scott Cheng, provides great technical expertise when it comes to maximizing Ingevity’s product portfolio. From discovering new application uses to exploring unique performance advantages of our various products, Scott is a valuable addition to the team. He has been in the metalworking fluid industry for 12 years and has extensive experience in formulating and technical support. Originally from China, Scott moved to the U.S. in the early 1990s to expand his career. He often travels with our global sales team to help solve customers’ complex problems.

Tell us about the experience you bring to your role and what you do at Ingevity.

I’ve worked in the metalworking fluid industry for 12 years and have been a principal application chemist for Ingevity’s lubricants team for nearly two years. I’m responsible for maximizing our current product portfolio by determining how we can expand in various applications. I also provide customer technical support, and have been involved with setting up our new China lubricants lab. Prior to joining Ingevity, I held many technical roles at Master Chemical in Toledo, Ohio where I gained experience in product development, formulation and management.

What does your typical day look like as a chemist for the Lubricants team?

As a principal applications chemist, I work on innovation projects to determine new applications for our existing products. When not in the lab, I visit global customers with the commercial team to provide technical support when needed.

What’s one of your favorite memories from a Lubricants project at Ingevity?

I love finding performance advantages for our products that will better serve our customers. One of my favorite memories is when I worked closely with an Indian customer to come up with an alternative product recommendation. They were having issues with a lubricant additive and were close to losing a major account. Our technical team provided technical expertise ultimately recommending AltaLUB 5300 as a replacement. Overall, we successfully solved our customer’s issue, helping them keep the account.

Where are you from and what is special about the place you grew up?

Growing up in the Chinese “Land of Fish and Rice” province of Jiangsu allowed me to appreciate the outdoors at a very early age. We lived in the countryside throughout my childhood and I spent most of my spare time fishing, boating and exploring. Jiangsu also influenced my love for cooking. It is home to Huaiyang cuisine — one of the eight Chinese culinary traditions known for its fresh, tender and light taste.

What is your life motto?

Always keep an open mind and embrace change.

Name something people may not know about you.

I’m surprisingly musically talented and played the Erhu, a two-stringed bowed musical instrument, when I was a boy. I also used to sing Chinese opera in my province growing up.

Who inspires you to be better?

My wife. She is my “boss at home” and always inspires me to be better.

What do you love most about living in Charleston?

My first experience of the United States occurred in the Lowcountry when I was stationed here for a three-month training with Sinopec-Amoco over 25 years ago. Thanks to those memories, Charleston will always hold a nostalgic place in my heart. Being close to the water reminds me of home, and the warm year-round weather doesn’t hurt either!

What do you enjoy doing most during your free time when you’re not in the lab?

I love spending time with my family outside of work. My daughter is a talented flutist, so we enjoy seeing her perform in her school band. I also enjoy cooking and experimenting with different recipes. I always compare cooking to lab work. A good formulator must be a good cook!