At this year's TOOLING 2019, the "Hans Berns-Award", which commemorates Prof. Hans Berns, is to be conferred for the first time. Prof. Hans Berns was one of the founding fathers of the Tooling Conference that emerged in the 1980s from national Swedish symposia on tooling. The first International Tooling Conference was initiated by Dr. Hans Nordberg (Uddeholm), Prof. Hans Berns (Ruhr University Bochum), and Prof. George Krauss (Colorado School of Mines) and took place in 1987 in the USA. Owing to the considerable interest of the European steelmaking industry as well as numerous university research institutions in the ongoing development of tool steel, Prof. Berns brought the 2nd International Tooling Conference in 1988 to Bochum in Germany and thus onto the European continent with participation of the three of the largest tool steel manufacturers (Uddeholm, Böhler, and Thyssen Edelstahl).
Prof. Berns (15.01.1935 - 02.12.2013) dedicated much of his working life to tool steels. After completing his studies on ferrous metallurgy in Aachen, he commenced his first employment in 1959 at Böhler AG in Düsseldorf. His area of responsibility steadily increased and in 1966 he became Head of Quality for castings, forgings, and finished products and was thus strongly involved in issues relating to tool steel. In 1979, after his completing his industry-supported doctorate and professorial dissertation, he accepted the Chair of Materials Science at the Ruhr University Bochum, which he held until his retirement in 2000. Even then he was still involved in the important core research field of tool materials, to whose ongoing development he had greatly contributed with more than 200 publications. In addition to his superb specialist knowledge and his excellent teaching skills, it should also be mentioned that throughout his life Prof. Berns attached great importance to the composition and style of a good scientific paper. A characteristic feature of his work ethics as a professor of materials science and author of numerous books was always the use of a high standard of scientific language. Furthermore, he always strived to make young engineers aware during their studies of the need for a clear structure, precise wording, and use of the correct scientific nomenclature in their technical writings.
Therefore, to commemorate Hans Berns, the Hans Berns-Award has been instituted with a 1000 € prize that will be conferred for the first time at this year's 11th Tooling Conference to the author of the best paper. This Award aims to honor both the scientific work and the person of Prof. Berns.