23. November 2007
"Our customers regard us as a partner, not just as the supplier of a high-quality product" declared Dr. Paul Belche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Dillinger Hütte, at the opening of the 8th International Constructional Steelwork Colloquium. "This is also apparent, not least of all, in the great international response to this specialist congress".
More than 220 experts from around the globe gathered at Dillinger Hütte's invitation in the municipal assembly hall in Dillingen on November 22 and 23, 2007 - a new record for participant numbers. Representing large industrial concerns, engineering consultancies, and also research institutes and universities, they discussed with the steel specialists from Germany's Saarland region the latest actual and potential applications for steel products in structural engineering.
The potentials of the latest product innovations achieved at Dillinger Hütte were discussed, and prominent examples of applications in civil engineering examined, both during the papers presented at the plenary sessions and in the context of smaller workgroups. Dillinger Hütte is Europe's leading supplier of heavy steel plate for sectors as diverse as the offshore industry, mechanical engineering, and pipelines for transmission of oil and natural gas. In the field of structural engineering, the company continues to be involved in the implementation of unique and demanding construction projects. Heavy plate from Dillingen is used - and not only throughout Europe - in numerous well-known structures, such as the Olympic stadium in Athens, the new Commerzbank building in Frankfurt am Main, the recently inaugurated trade-fair facilities and multi-level car-park in Stuttgart, and - also in Stuttgart, with opening planned for 2008 - the Porsche Museum, with its impressive avant-garde architecture. Dillingen's high-quality steel is used in major projects around the globe, including the 492 m high World Financial Center, in Shanghai, China, also currently on target to open early next year.
Alongside a large range of technical aspects, the dynamics of the global heavy-plate market were also discussed. "As a result of high levels of consumption in the fields of energy recovery and transmission, heavy steel plate is currently enjoying extremely high demand", continued Dr. Belche. This made it all the more pleasing that the construction industry is increasingly coming to appreciate the benefits of using steel. Bridges, ultra-modern high-rise towers, and industrial buildings, in particular, are built around a steel support structure. The latest examples in the European region are the bridges on the new TGV Est high-speed rail line to Paris, for which Dillinger Hütte supplied some 20,000 tonnes of steel plate.
This year, the long-established colloquium for the first time included the opportunity for students from the University of the Saarland and the University of Applied Sciences, Saarbrücken, to spend two days talking to representatives of the industry and studying practical examples of applications for steel. Numerous students from these two universities accepted the company's invitation to attend the colloquium. "Close cooperation and interaction with technical teaching institutions and universities is an important element in our corporate policy" noted Dr. Belche. "Our intention here is to provide these young people with insights into the world of professional work and to arouse their enthusiasm for steel as an innovative material, and for its innumerable and diverse properties and applications". The colloquium, dealing with so many aspects of the use of steel products, and attended by international experts, provided the ideal forum for this.
Innovative top-quality steel products, total orientation around our customers' needs and unceasing technological development in close cooperation with our partners form the basis of our success - as they have for more than 330 years.
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