This month, we are shining the spotlight on a variety of associations within our industry to discuss the resources they have to offer readers.  The list is in no particular order, but it acknowledges that our industry includes steelmaking, forging, heat treating, joining and powder metals/additive manufacturing. Needless to say, not all of these will apply to our entire readership.

AIST (Association for Iron & Steel Technology)

I’ll start with one which I have been a member for most of my 40-year career and still am: AIST. Their annual meeting – AISTech – is huge and often takes place in our home city of Pittsburgh. AISTech offers a large and diverse show floor, but you can also take part in numerous high-quality technical sessions. AISTech 2023 will be held May 8-11 in Detroit.

In addition to AISTech, several technical training sessions are offered throughout the year. Taking advantage of these opportunities may take the place of in-house training. Training includes: Environmental Solutions – EPA Requirements; Hot Sheet and Plate Rolling Fundamentals; Maintenance Solutions (Analytics); Continuous Casting Fundamentals; Secondary Steelmaking Refractories; Scrap Supplements and Alternative Ironmaking; and Science and Technology of Steelmaking.  IAST laptop

Because AIST is so large, they also have a good network of regional meetings and technical committee meetings. Looking at the calendar from July to November, there are 11 Member Chapter Events scheduled in addition to six Technology Committee Meetings. For a time in a former life, I was briefly involved in the Rolls Technology Committee.

AIST’s monthly publication, Iron & Steel Technology, also offers several ferrous-related technical articles for your perusal and information.


APMI International – Metal Powder Industries Federation (MPIF)

Staying with my member associations, APMI International is another on my list. Being an international association, many opportunities exist for training and career growth. APMI’s stated purpose is “to provide for the dissemination and exchange of information pertaining to powder metallurgy through publications, conferences and the Powder Metallurgy Technologist (PMT) Certification Program.” Their technical journal, International Journal of Powder Metallurgy, is published quarterly.

Several conferences that happen on a periodic basis are: PMTi, International Conference on Hot Iso-static Pressing, WorldPM, MIM and PowderMet2023/AMPM2023. The latter, which has incorporated additive manufacturing, is scheduled for June 18-23, 2023. Other seminars and short courses are of-fered (e.g., Basic PM Short Course, PM Management Summit, Sintering Seminar, PM Self-Study Course). APMI also has numerous local organizations (mine is West Penn) that host educational and social events on a regular basis.

The PMT Certification Program “was created by APMI International to recognize individuals who have demonstrated a comprehension of a specified body of knowledge encompassing the broad field of powder metallurgy.”


Forging Industry Association (FIA) and FIERF

For our FORGE readers, your industry association is FIA, which holds its conference, Forge Fair, every two years. Other events, such as the International Forging Congress and ForjaMex, are offered. FIA also provides learning opportunities and webinars, such as Forging Automation 101, Theory and Application of Forging & Die Design, Forging Die Life Improvement Workshop, and Fundamentals of Cost Estimating Closed Die Forgings.

FIERF Forging Foundation encourages companies to partner with them “to help develop our future workforce; support research projects that connect you with academia and provide practical knowledge for your company; and experience unique networking opportunities within the industry.” FIERF also offers several annual undergrad and graduate scholarships for students interested in the forging industry.


ASM International

Also an international association, ASM provides a wide range of programming to enhance our industry. One of the subgroups of ASM is the Heat Treat Society (HTS), which is “the world’s largest network of heat treaters.” ASM’s biannual Heat Treat Show is “one of the world’s largest gatherings of heat-treat professionals,” and it meets in the autumn on odd-numbered years. Heat Treat 23 is scheduled for Oct. 17-19, 2023 in Detroit.

Here’s what ASM says about IMAT. “IMAT is ASM’s re-imagined Annual Meeting! In keeping with our focus on membership needs, IMAT offers an industry-focused conference and exposition targeting the advancement of materials processes and their applications. IMAT provides application-oriented, real-world technologies that can be used today!”

Beyond Heat Treat, IMAT and the Global Materials Summit, ASM offers a wide range of training opportunities. These include but are not limited to: Basics of Heat Treating; Vacuum Heat Treating; Practical Heat Treating; HT, Microstructures and Performance of Carbon and Alloy Steels; Fundamentals of Data Management for Materials; and various webinars.

IAST laptop

Industrial Heating Equipment Association (IHEA)

This fall the Industrial Heating Equipment Association (IHEA) will offer its Combustion Seminar and Safety Standards and Codes Seminar October 3-4 in Indianapolis, Ind. The concurrent technical seminars will be held on Monday and Tuesday at the Indiana Convention Center.

IHEA’s Combustion Seminar is designed for those responsible for the operation, design, selection and/or maintenance of fuel-fired industrial furnaces and ovens. The Safety Standards and Codes Seminar will provide a comprehensive overview of the NFPA 86 Standard for Ovens and Furnaces. This is the first opportunity for attendees to learn about the most recent updates to the standard.

In addition to in-person education and training, IHEA is going virtual with its six-week online course. Fundamentals of Industrial Process Heating will run from October 24 through December 11. A basic understanding of process heating and some engineering background are recommended to register.



Admittedly, I have not included all of the associations available to our readership. Others – such as MTI, ASME, AISI and TMS – contribute to the industry in different ways. TMS 2023, the 152nd Annual Meeting & Exhibition, will take place in San Diego March 19-23, 2023.

With all of these associations at our disposal, I’m sure there is at least one that can be a valuable resource to you and your company. Membership has its privileges.