ABF and Primetals Technologies to Collaborate on Automation Solutions

In June 2023, Automation Builds Future, ABF, and Primetals Technologies signed a partnership agreement on inventory management solutions for the metals industry at the METEC trade fair in Düsseldorf.

The partnership aims to develop and market intelligent solutions for the automation of storing semi-finished and finished products at steel plants. ABF has over 30 years of experience developing automation solutions for storage logistics, such as tracking, identifying, and locating items. Primetals Technologies brings to the collaboration decades of experience in automating and digitalizing metallurgical processes. The first joint projects are already in preparation.

Automated Plant Logistics

We see huge potential for improving the quality, productivity, and flexibility of production by optimizing and automating the intralogistics of semi-finished and finished products in a steel plant.”

Gustav Buchberger
Managing Director

Automated plant logistics offer several benefits to steel producers, who can deliver slabs or coils on time and with the proper characteristics, such as the desired temperature. Unnecessary transportation of products is also avoided, processing times are reduced, and, in addition, the energy required for reheating semi-finished products lessens, reducing the plant’s CO2 footprint. Furthermore, a higher degree of automation for plant logistics improves safety for personnel, and the reduced need to transport materials lowers the risk of damaging the products while process reliability is increased.

In a steel plant, a good inventory management strategy lays a solid foundation for the execution of subsequent processes. The production planning system specifies which products should be manufactured. The required metallurgical properties are stored in knowledge databases, which are part of the process control software. Therefore, all these systems must be fully networked, i.e., connected to one another.”

Kurt Herzog
Head of Industry 4.0
Primetals Technologies
The signing ceremony took place at the trade fair METEC in Düsseldorf. From left to right: Kurt Herzog, Head of Industry 4.0 (Primetals Technologies); Gustav Buchberger, Managing Director (ABF); Hermann Freiberge, Head of R&D (ABF); Hans-Jürgen Zeiher, Head of Electrics and Automation (Primetals Technologies); and Christian Hiebl, COO (ABF).


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