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European Hard Materials Group (EuroHM)

Formerly EHMG

EuroHM Chairs

Dr Steven Moseley (Hilti AG)

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Position: Co-Chair

Steve Moseley holds a bachelors degree and Ph.D. in Metallurgy from the University of Sheffield, UK, and has worked in the field of powder metallurgy since 1987. Following research work on HIPing of ceramic-metal powder composites, he spent 3 years in the steel industry before returning to PM as Technical/Quality Manager for a UK-based hardmetal manufacturer. Since 1996 he has worked at Hilti in Liechtenstein primarily on the development of cutting materials, joining technologies and drilling systems, covering cemented tungsten carbide hardmetals, diamond impregnated segments and polycrystalline diamond. His current position is “Chief Scientist – Hard Materials” within the business unit “Power Tools and Accessories”.

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Prof Luis Llanes (UPC)

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Position: Co-Chair

Remembering Dr Leo Prakash - 1949-2019

Leo PrakashDr. Leo Prakash was a renowned authority in the field of cemented carbides and other hard materials. A modest man with a contagious smile, he often understated his wealth of knowledge on the subject which is widely acknowledged within both academic and industrial circles.

His pioneering work in the late 1970's and early 1980's on iron-based binders for hardmetals led to the commercialization of several alternatives to pure cobalt and laid the foundation for the wave of recent research and development into low cobalt and cobalt-free hardmetals, an important topic considering the status of cobalt as a critical raw materal as well as the current strict classification issues. Following on, from the mid-late 1980’s and into the 1990’s, his fundamental studies into the mechanisms of grain growth inhibition and sintering of the very finest grained tungsten carbide hardmetals at the time were also of great significance for the industry, as were his studies of material properties and performance in both laboratory tests and practical applications. He authored or co-authored over 40 publications in international journals, conferences and textbooks, and many are still regularly cited today.

Based on his many decades of international industrial experience in R&D, production and general management within the hardmetal industry, even after most people enjoy a comfortable retirement he continued practicing his art and supporting academia and industry through his global consultancy activities and participation in many national and international bodies.

For the last 10 years, he was co-chairman of the EuroHM, the European hard materials group within the EPMA (European Powder Metallurgy Association). In this role he originated and initiated a series of "Club Projects", bringing together RTO's and industrial companies from across Europe to perform pre-competitive basic research on a range of topics related to cemented carbides. This collaborative model has also been adopted by other sectoral groups within the EPMA and has proven to be one of its’ success stories of recent years. At EuroPM and WorldPM conferences, his hard work behind the scenes helped shape the scientific content of Technical Sessions and he personally organized several Special Interest Seminars at those events. The EuroHM could simply not have achieved its current standing without his tremendous support.

He was central to fostering a true hard materials community within Europe and is an iconic and highly respected figure within the field. One lasting contribution will be the “Vision2025” EPMA roadmap document for hard materials he co-authored, defining the future strategy and R&D focus of the European hard materials community and how it should address the major challenges of low cost competition from outside Europe and potential raw material supply chain disruption.

He will be sorely missed.

EuroHM Steering Group

The EuroHM Steering Group comprises of: Dr Olivier Coube (OCSYNERGIES), Prof Luis Llanes (UPC), Dr Steven Moseley (Hilti) and Dr Bryan Roebuck (NPL).

The European Hard Materials Group (EuroHM) represents EPMA members, suppliers and research community involved in Hardmetals, Cemented Carbides, and polycrystalline materials such as CBN, Ceramic and Diamond Tools. Tooling based on hardmetals and diamonds are the backbone of any and all manufacturing processes. Almost every modern product has been touched by a hardmetal component. As an example, around fifty machining operations using hardmetal tools are needed in the automotive industry to manufacture a single car. The hardmetals sector therefore supplies significant volumes in the automotive and aerospace sectors but has also major markets in advanced manufacturing, construction, mining and wear applications (cf. Vision 2025 Future Developments for the European PM Industry). For example, the world mining industry supports 700 billion euros of economic activity in its own right. The EuroHM Group reflects the importance in Europe of the hard material sector, the size of which is multibillion euros and comparable to the structural parts sector.

The European Hard Materials Group EuroHM (formerly EHMG) was established in 1999. In 2005 EPMA Council approved broadening the range of industries covered to include ceramic cutting tools.

In common with other EPMA sectoral groups the EuroHM has a regular Roadmapping function, this identifies markets, drivers and potential solutions influencing the major issues that will shape the future of the industry. The European Hardmetals and Diamond Tools industry faces two major challenges: pressure from low cost manufacturers external to Europe and raw material supply chain disruption. The industry is therefore moving to added value and technology driven sales underpinned by the use of recycling at a large scale. The role of the EuroHM is to support its Members in these challenges with the following activities:

  • Industry promotion in various Exhibitions over Europe.
  • Environment, Health and Safety issues through the support of the EPMA EHS Department
  • Education and Training including regular WINTEREV and SUMMEREV workshops (see WINTEREV/SUMMEREV section), Hard Materials Seminars.
  • Networking through the regular Euro PM and World PM events organised by the EPMA and the Euro HM open and special meetings
  • Research including support and participation in EU projects and coordination of “Club Projects”, funded internally by a consortium of EPMA members (see www.epma.com/projects).

For further information on the EuroHM and how to become a member please contact Bruno Vicenzi, EPMA Technical Manager at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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