The 8th International Conference on Modeling and Simulation of Metallurgical Processes in Steelmaking (aka STEELSIM 2019) took place on August 13–15 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, and attendees came from 22 countries worldwide to exchange recent research and development findings on advanced technological applications for the steel industry. With a total of nearly 170 attendees from 98 companies and universities internationally, the importance of the continuing digital technology transformation to the steel industry was made clear, as “almost everybody sent somebody” to the conference.
Purdue University Northwest’s significant links to steel manufacturing and to process simulation research also gleamed throughout the conference, as fully 12 PNW and CIVS faculty, limited-term lecturer, visiting scholar, staff, and students (5 students!) attended the conference—the most by any single company or university. Nearby McMaster University, another stalwart in steel industry research, meanwhile contributed one Assistant Professor and 5 Master’s/Ph.D. students to the attendance list.
Displaying their dedication to both performing and disseminating research, multiple PNW/CIVS students and staff took on multiple roles, and among the conference highlights were:
- CIVS graduate research assistant Haibo Ma delivered two presentations (“Methods for Modeling Heat Transfer and Solidification in Continuous Casting” and “Study on Numerical Simulation Strategy for Spray Cooling During Continuous Casting Process”) and chaired a session on Microstructural Effects on Product.
- CIVS staff research engineer Nick Walla delivered two presentations (“Analysis of Transport and Removal of Inclusions in an Industrial Gas-Stirred Ladle” and “Industrial Fan Predictive Maintenance Using Deep Recurrent Neural Network”) and chaired a session on Steel-Slag Interaction.
- CIVS graduate research assistant Bethany Worl delivered the presentation “Analysis of the Effects of Oxygen Enrichment in a Reheating Furnace.”
- CIVS graduate research assistant Yuchao Chen delivered two presentations (“Numerical Simulation of Oxy-Natural Gas Combustion in an Electric Arc Furnace” and “Caster Scheduling Model for Process Optimization”).
- CIVS graduate research assistant Josh Vandenoever delivered the presentation “Investigation of the Effects of Bubble Initial Diameter and Gas Flowrate on the Slag Eye Size in a Steel Ladle With Bottom Plug.”
- CIVS staff research engineer Tyamo Okosun delivered the keynote presentation “Investigation of High-Rate and Pre-Heated Natural Gas Injection in the Blast Furnace” and chaired a Rolling & Reheating session.
- PNW/CIVS visiting scholar Rongjia Zhu, “on loan” from Changsha, China’s Central South University, delivered the presentation “Calculation of the Skull Inner Profile in the Belly Section of a Blast Furnace Based on Element Birth and Death Technology in ANSYS.”
- PNW Limited-Term Lecturer Aditi Datta delivered the presentation “Ab-Initio Guided Design and Materials Informatics for Accelerated Product Development of Next-Generation Advanced High-Strength Steels (AHSS).”
- In addition to performing her duties as Chair of the AIST Scientific Program Committee that organized STEELSIM 2019, CIVS and SMSVC Director Chenn Zhou delivered both the opening remarks and the presentation “Overview of Steel Manufacturing Simulation and Visualization Consortium.”
- PNW Professor Harvey Abramowitz delivered a presentation on “Ternary Phase Diagrams and AR (Augmented Reality)”
Delivering the Plenary Lecture on “Data, Modeling and Time in Smart Manufacturing,” and forging new connections between advanced technology research in steel and the Clean Energy Smart Manufacturing Innovation Institute (CESMII) was Jim Davis from UCLA.
“The level of audience engagement at this year’s STEELSIM was as good as I’ve ever experienced,” said CIVS staff research engineer Nick Walla. “Meaningful questions were asked at every presentation; there were a lot of high-level interactions between students and presenters—which was great to see; the presenters were very generous with their time and expertise; and everybody went home with both useful information and probably a lot of useful contacts.
“Personally, I was particularly impressed with the material on neural networks and data mining techniques for failure prediction in steel casting, delivered by Rebecca Peters from the University of South Wales. It wasn’t just that the subject matter is so relevant for steelmaking—it is very relevant; it was also that the material was presented for maximum understanding, and that type of communication ability helps everybody to implement and innovate these advanced technologies.”