Today, the Acerinox Europa factory in Los Barrios (Cádiz) received a visit from the Fundación General CSIC (General Foundation of the Spanish National Research Council, FGCSIC). The event was hosted as part of the ComFuturo framework, a program promoted by the Foundation to attract scientific talent. Since 2017, the program has partnered with this leading group in the manufacture and distribution of stainless steel and high-performance alloys.
Ramón Torrecillas and María Sanz, the FGCSIC's general director and director of Science and Talent, respectively, participated in the visit, alongside ComFuturo researcher Lucía Morales and her supervisor David San Martín, both scientists at the CSIC’s National Center for Metallurgical Research, and Juan Almagro, Acerinox's R&D coordinator, who received the visitors and led them on a tour of the factory facilities.
The head of the plant, Francisco Fernández de la Mata, welcomed the group before teams of Acerinox professionals accompanied the visitors on an informative tour of the melting shop (fusion, refining, and casting), followed by hot- and cold-rolling mill trains, and ending with the final annealing area. The group then held a work meeting that underscored the value of the collaboration between the two entities. During the meeting, researcher Lucía Morales presented the progress on her ComFuturo project, titled “AUSTANDING.”
Dr. Morales is the grant recipient of the line of research proposed by Acerinox in the current edition of ComFuturo. Her project, AUSTANDING, looks at the design and additive manufacture of a new high-performance stainless steel whose production process will contribute to advancements toward a net-zero-carbon-emissions steel-industry model.
The ComFuturo collaboration between Acerinox and the FGCSIC represents a success story for the initiative, which was launched in 2014 with the aim of retaining our country's best young research talent. Since its inception, the program has evolved throughout its successive calls before arriving at its current third edition, held for the first time as part of the European Commission's Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions. ComFuturo aspires to establish a new generation of global, versatile, and multifaceted researchers who combine scientific excellence with capabilities in knowledge enhancement, and who know how to combine scientific leadership with a practical approach to solving issues related to both markets and society. Throughout the three years of her ComFuturo project, researcher Lucía Morales will maintain close ties with Acerinox. She will also carry out work stays at the company in order to apply her research in a real-world industrial setting.