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These days, I read a press release from Thyssen Krupp - and this reminded me so much about relativeness of time. While some industries are planning their production in cycles of minutes, here we have a completely differents story.

In their presse release, Thyssen Krupp describes the 'life' of a blast furnace. This specific blast furnance is the biggest one in Europe - and it has been runnning continuously for 21 years! This cycle is called in the steel industry a campaign. When comparing it to campaigns in other industries (eg. Consumer Products), this is incredibly long. During this time, the blast furnace has produced the incredible amount of 75 million tons of iron. This is enough to build 3,200 copies of the famous Hohenzollern-Bridge in Cologne.

This is the Hohenzollern-Bridge:

(picture from Mich.kramer, Wikipedia)

Now this blast furnace is being shut down for a complete overhaul. ThyssenKrupp expects this overhaul to cost as much as 200 million euro. The work is planned to take 1,5 years, with approx. 400 people working on this project. A little (or not so little) container village is built next to the blast furnace for this time.

I do not know how TK is handling this project - at least I would see great opportunity to use a couple of nice solutions - eg. project management and EAM.

To me this is a great example of characteristics of this industry:

  • endurance
  • massive efforts
  • long-lasting and far-reaching decisions

When you hear stories like these, you can really get a feeling about typical patterns in this industry.

PS: Maybe you would find it interesting to attend the following Session at Sapphire_Now 2104 in Orlando. A very cool solution that helps in planning on a different level.

SAPPHIRE IN14264:  Align Supply and Demand in Real Time for Profitable Process Industries

Speaker: Ray Adams, SAP

Unite stakeholders in process companies, and translate fluctuations in customer demand into actionable operational plans for logistics, manufacturing, and procurement. Learn how to use a unified model of demand, supply chain, and financial data in real time with the SAP Sales and Operations Planning application, powered by SAP HANA.

Date: Tuesday, June 3, 10:30am – 11:50am

Date: Thursday, June 5, 1:00pm –  1:20pm

Location:  Industries Campus, Energy and Natural Resources, Demo Theater 2

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