Prof. Ulrich Panne in conversation

Prof. Ulrich Panne in conversation with BMWi State Secretary Oliver Wittke (left) and FOSTA Managing Director Dr.-Ing. Hans-Joachim Wieland (right).

Source: BMWi / Andreas Mertens

With an annual production of 44 million tonnes (2017) and a turnover of around 35 billion euros (2016), the German steel industry is a leader in the EU and among the top ten worldwide. As a basic industry, it also plays a key role in German value chains. New application scenarios require continuous research in the field of materials technology. The Forschungsvereinigung Stahlanwendung e. V. (Research Association for Steel Application, FOSTA) has been particularly committed to iron and steel application technology for 50 years. On the occasion of this anniversary, BAM President Prof. Ulrich Panne congratulated their achievements and emphasised the enormous potential of scientific interdisciplinarity – not least for better knowledge transfer between research institutions and industry and the general public.

Oliver Wittke, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi), emphasised that the steel industry makes an important contribution to CO2 reduction, recyclability and efficient use of resources in industry. Thanks to impressive lightweight structures, steel has great potential for industrial users. With its many years of experience, BAM also has participated in FOSTA research projects within the scope of the promotion programme for Industrial Community Research (IGF). This research is not being performed in an ivory tower, rather it is practical research and strengthens the German marketplace.

Steel research at BAM

Steel research has a long tradition at BAM. This tradition is closely linked to the name of Adolf Martens – a pioneer in materials technology and damage analysis as well as head of the Royal Mechanic-Technical Research Institute, from which BAM emerged. Even today, BAM investigates material properties of steels under a wide variety of conditions, e.g. joining and welding technologies, materials for lightweight structures, corrosion and ageing mechanisms as well as the energy and resource efficient use of steels.


The Forschungsvereinigung Stahlanwendung e. V. (Research Association for Steel Application, FOSTA) is a non-profit organisation and a legally independent research association within the steel sector. As a joint organisation, it represents the interests of the steel industry in the field of precompetitive application research and its different product forms together with steel users.