The Future Steel Forum 2019, to be held in Budapest at the Sofitel Hotel (25-26 September) is shaping up to be an interesting and valuable event for any steelmaker interested in digital manufacturing and the steelmaking process.

The Forum, now in its third successful year, promises delegates a full two-day programme of presentations given by leading figures from the global steel industry, plant builders, technologists and academics in the field.

The event will kick off with an opening keynote from Chinese steelmaker Rockcheck Steel Group's CEO Catherine Zhang who will look at the development of digital steelmaking in China and will be followed by Carlos Alba, global research programme leader, digital and techno-economics for ArcelorMittal talking about 'innovation ecosystems' in steel manufacturing.

This year's event then takes a look at Fog Computing within a session on Smart Factories chaired by Jean-Paul Nauzin, vice president of marketing and technology within Fives' steel business unit. The session features presentations from Dr. Lane Thames, senior security research at Tripwire Inc's vulnerability and exposure research team. Dr. Lane examines the phenomenon of fog computing and is followed by University of Liverpool's Dr. Jelena Milisavljevic, who lectures in industrial design and will discuss the development of highly dynamic reconfigurable manufacturing systems. The session also contains a paper from POSCO's Pohang Works on the 'smartisation of the ironmaking process' given by senior vice president Hee-Geun Lee.

The World Steel Association's Henk Reimink, director, Industry of Excellence, talks about worldsteel's Smart Steel Initiative in a sustainability session chaired by ArcelorMittal's Carlos Alba. The session in question kicks off with a paper from Clemens Schneider, project manager of the Wuppertal Institute, entitled Future Green Steel, an area the conference will continue to focus on in the years to come as programme director, Matthew Moggridge explained.

"The Future Steel Forum is all about the future of the steel industry and the role of technology, in particular digitalisation and Industry 4.0, but it's also about other fast changing aspects of the industry, namely the production of greener steel," he said, adding that hi-tech will continue to play an important role in steel production.

Other important subjects given air play in Budapest will be strategic and tactical logistics planning optimisation (by ArcelorMittal's Diego Diaz Fidalgo) and a paper by Tata Steel's Dr. Svend Lassen, head of reporting and analytics, sales and marketing and supply. Primetals Technologies' Markus Ringhofer looks at holistic logistics solutions as a major driver to optimise productivity in a steelworks and Finnish logistics company Pesmel and IBM both examine opportunities and tools in the steel industry logistics chain.

Primetals Technologies' Kurt Herzog, head of Industry 4.0 at the company, chairs the first of two business models sessions and will introduce papers from SMS group and Endress + Hauser who are discussing the learning steel plant – which has seen action at Big River Steel, Osceola, Arkansas – and predictive maintenance and automated device collection respectively.

All the way from San Francisco, Stephen Pratt, founder and CEO of Noodle AI, will look at artificial intelligence and how it will enable a leap to radical efficiency in the steel industry.

Where cyber security is concerned, Marcus J Neuer, head of department, downstream automation, BFI, talks about automation security and Industry 4.0 while ESTEP's Smart Factory Focus Group chairman, Costanzo Pietrosanti, looks at industrial cybersecurity and how to close the gap between the needs of the European steel industry and the direction of research and development into the implementation of Industry 4.0.

The big panel discussion will focus on the workforce of the future and will begin with a presentation entitled Frontier Issues for Succeeding in a Digitised World by Farrokh Mistree, LA Comp Chair and Professor at the School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering, University of Oklahoma, USA. The panel, chaired by Dr. Nils Naujok of PwC Strategy&, will include Eric Vitse, chief technology officer, Liberty House Group, IBM's worldwide executive director and partner (Industry Solutions) and Fives Group's Kriistian Van Teutum, vice president of marketing and sales. Farrokh Mistree from the University of Oklahoma will also be a panelist.

Future Steel Forum is a two-day event and delegates can register now by visiting the official website,