Once again, the Expert Committee brought together experts from production companies, suppliers of refractory materials, melting and casting furnaces, casting plants, measuring and operating technology with each other and with experts and young scientists from research institutes, colleges and universities for technical discussions and a practical exchange of experience. Only the traditional plant tour followed by a joint dinner, usually the highlight of any meeting characterized by mutual visits, fell victim to the pandemic - "digital visits" have not yet reached practical application maturity.
Items on the agenda for 2 December 2020 were the exchange of experience on continuous casting under pandemic conditions, reports from the working groups and from the university institutes, future topics of technical exchange and the organization of the Expert Committee. The decision to hold the "Continuous Casting 2021" symposium as a virtual meeting in June 2021 is trend-setting. The "Extrusion" symposium planned in parallel is not expected to take place for the time being.
Occupational safety will also remain the top topic of future working group activities. The exchange of information among the working groups on this topic and the continuation of regular surveys on safety work in the member companies have been agreed.
The working groups generally meet once or twice during the year. The "Furnace-independent mold - aluminium" working group already met in May 2020 under the leadership of Dr. Dietmar Bramhoff via team video conference to exchange technical information. This is to be continued. With the election of Dr. Hartmut Ricken as head and Dr. Alexander Khoury as deputy head, the merger of the former "Furnace-independent mold - copper" and "Furnace-dependent mold" working groups to form the new "Copper Materials" working group was completed. In its review, the Expert Committee paid tribute to the joint work of the working groups and honored in particular Dr. Dirk Rode, who successfully led and shaped the working group "Furnace-independent mold - copper" from its foundation in 1990 to the present day.
The Expert Committee decided that there should also be an annual meeting in 2021 following up on the (online) symposium "Continuous Casting 2021", in a personal meeting in November or December if possible. Therefore, the planning is to be based on a visit by a member company. If necessary, however, at least a video conference should take place again.
Prof. Dr.-Ing. habil. Jürgen Rüdiger Böhmer, Hildesheim
Head EC Continuous Casting