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Wednesday, 6 May 2015

LINK_Innovation union-A Free well illustrated pocket guide on Innovation & Growth_A Europe 2020 initiative_Update

Let me bring this free guide to the attention of my friends and colleagues in metallurgy, materials science and engineering, especially our members of  IOM3 (UK)  and SF2M (Fr)Let me thank the EU for the RSS feed which allows me to bring some very good summaries and overall views of our multidisciplinary subject.


Innovation union-A Free well illustrated pocket guide on Innovation & Growth_A Europe 2020 initiative

Kind Regards. JA.

Monday, 4 May 2015

Imphy Special Steels & Alloys Steelworks_Off the EU radar! & My Local weather here in the centre of France_Info Update

I have just included Meteo France's weather provision for my area. The meteo station is nearby (a couple of kms away) so is pretty reliable. Potential visitors will find the city of Nevers lies on the the famous N7 road and on the banks of the Loire river. Access to water from France's longest river La Loire led Colbert to choose the region for the "once"! famous steelworks at Imphy situated  15kms from Nevers. The much modernised factory where I had the privilege to work for many years researches and manufactures a huge variety of special steels, and alloys. They range from steels for aircraft undercarriage through delicate to manufacture iron-chromium(Fe-Cr) and iron-chromium-nickel (Fe-Cr-Ni) stainless, corrosion resistant steels.  They are the world reference for weldable iron-nickel (Fe-36%Ni) Invar sheet metal for liquid gas sea transportation. The range of Fe-Ni alloys, with or without cobalt (Co) runs from Fe-30%Ni to Fe-80%Ni with dilatometric, magnetic and electrical properties.  If this is not a sufficiently, highly sportive, endeavour then add the the aero-engine alloy family: The famous Superalloys; Inconels,Udimets, Waspalloys and an early competitor in power metallurgical research, development and manufacture; I personally had privileged fun with Superalloy development; melting and refining, introducing revert material into aeroengine alloys to meet the most stringent requirement of the civil aviation authorities and the major aeroengine manufacturers, GE-SNECMA,(USA-FR) Rolls Royce,(UK) Pratt & Whitney (USA), Turbomeca (Fr), MTU(Ger). Refs below

I know that at least one of my ex-colleagues must be pleased that France's Rafale Fighter Jet aircraft is now selling, namely Dr. G. Raisson who got the powder metallurgical manufacturing up and running. Unfortuneatly two others who deserve great credit are nolonger with us: My long time boss Y. Honnorat, (Ecole Centrale Paris) one of the most brillant minds I have ever encountered and my dear friend and ex-colleage Dr. James H. Davidson (ex Sheffield Univ.& Imphy Research Centre).

 (Cheers and Kind regards)

My presentation of the local weather here, has lead me to decline with many thanks this once proud special steels and alloys plant. Proud to have developed the ideas of  Charles Edouard Guillaume, whom my British metallurgical colleagues, members of IOM3_Institute of Mining, Minerals & Materials consider (tongue in cheek) to be the only winner of the Nobel Prize in Metallurgy (Physics of course)  Guillaume was based at the International Bureau of Weights & Measures (NPL-UK equivalent)and his "associate" in Industry (Imphy based) Pierre Chevenard. I have had the privilege of working with Research and Manufacturing Development Metallurgists who have personally known Pierre Chevenard.

Now I am reporting this due to my astonishment upon reading the EU-report: Metallurgy Europe –A Renaissance Programme for 2012-2022 list in Annex 2. Potential Beneficiaries from European Industry (non-exhaustive!) 

Non-exhaustive, is no excuse! This unique entity once"Imphy SA" Three melt-shops, Electric Arc mini mill at least 20years ahead of USA, It's own on site R&D centre, developing its own materials while others in France bought US technology and know-how. Plus three first class laboratories, 1 Chemical Analysis for production and quality requirements-cf. scope of materials above. 2. Mechanical properties, from cryogenic to high temperature corrosion and strength. Macroscopic and microscopic control and development. 3. Physical properties lab for dilatometric,magnetic and electrical control and development.    

That this once proud industrial innovator comes under the relatively unknown name APERAM-Chairman Mr Lakshmi Mittal. What it is today, I can hardly imagine. Last news I had was that the 1500 person strongly integrated Imphy site (Imphy SA) in my days appears to be a hotchpotch composed of : Steel melting-Mittal, Special Iron Steels, Stainless Steels  & Superalloys "Techphy-Eramet_Aubert & Duval". Will this new attempt to bring perhaps a sense of unity and the strong sense of identity of my days succeed?  Will the latest rationalisation demotivate under the still unknown company, called APERAM, unknown at least in the above referenced EU listing.  
I do  hope that success is on the agenda for the sake of current employees and for our relatively deprived region, easily forgotten also by our regional capital of Bourgogne (Burgundy) the city of Dijon. No help in view alleviated by transportation difficulties. Indeed it is much easier to travel to Paris or Clermont-Ferrand and should I dare say more useful? National plans for an enlarged Burgundy will penalise further our "West Burgundy" On the EU french divide we are as far from capitol Strasbourg as is possible (Grand Est-Greater East). Perhaps Paris in it's plans for the greater Paris_Isle-de-France will include our city Nevers and our department (county) La Nièvre and so benefit from the economic attaction, and over-populated capital, Paris.

If any of my readers can do a better summary of such industrial (passed-lost?) glory I would be please to hear.


1. Metallurgy Europe –A Renaissance Programme for 2012-2022

2. Optimizing deoxidation and desuIphurization during vacuum induction melting of alloy 718 (freely available to IOM3 members)
Article Type: Research Article
pp. 167–170 Preview | Abstract | PDF (433 KB)
Tried and Proven by melting bi-annually; 2 series of 6 VIM melts, each melt weighing  4.6(5)Tonne batches of lingot electrodes by bottom pouring by VIM for VAR Remelting. 

3. Reliable Source of Superalloy 718 revert material :

 Ireland Alloys Ltd, Scotland, UK.

High Purity Cr sources for Superalloys

Energy for th Future:Phil.Trans.A-Vol. 365, N° 1853 / April 15, 2007, curtesy The Royal Soc. London

Engineered foams and porous materials: Phil Trans A. Vol 364, N° 1838 / 06 curtesy_The R Soc. Lond