Q&A with Thomas Passek

Executive Director ASM Heat Treating Society


Could you give us a brief overview of the society’s origins and structure?

In 1913 William Park Woodside, who was trained as a blacksmith and worked for the Cadillac Motor Car Company, met with 18 colleagues in Detroit and formed The Steel Treaters’ Club. As it grew it split into two factions, one based in Detroit and the other in Chicago, but they were reunited in 1920 as the American Society for Steel Treating headquartered in Cleveland. Soon after the decision was made to broaden activities to address the complete range of metals and related processes, we were renamed American Society for Metals—later changed to ASM International to reflect our wider geographic influence.

By the nineties, key technical affinity groups within the membership were established as affiliate societies, including the ASM Heat Treating Society (HTS), the ASM Thermal Spray Society (TSS), and the International Metallographic Society (IMS). They were later joined by the Electronic Devices Failure Analysis Society (EDFAS) and the International Organization on Shape Memory and Superelastic Technologies (SMST) for a total of five affiliate societies beneath the ASM International umbrella.

Along the way we began holding conferences and exhibitions, producing the Metals Handbook, and publishing magazines such as Heat Treating Progress and Advanced Materials & Processes, and now we provide our authoritative, peer-reviewed knowledge to our members and customers via our global materials community of Web sites and databases. This has cemented our reputation as “Everything Material.” Our world headquarters are now located in Materials Park, Ohio, a half hour east of Cleveland. That’s a brief description, but it gives you an idea of how we came into being.

What are the advantages of joining the ASM Heat Treating Society?

You do so by joining ASM International and specifying that you’d like to be a member of HTS as well, at which time you begin receiving Heat Treating Progress magazine and gain online access to our online HTS community, Heat Treater’s Guide and research library. You also receive “ASM Points” when you join or renew, which can be redeemed for your choice of premium articles from among the 40,000 or so available from the ASM Web site. There are plenty of educational opportunities, as well, since we offer e-learning, classroom/lab courses, on-site training, and self-study courses. Members also have access to our complete online membership networking directory, can join discussion groups on particular topics, and receive discounts on registration for our annual conference and exposition.

I understand that yours will be co-located with the AGMA’s GEAR EXPO in Indianapolis this year.

That’s right. We are always looking for ways to provide a more valuable experience for our members—and in talking with them and our exhibitors and participants we found a very high level of interest in GEAR EXPO. We approached the AGMA about bringing our two shows together since the connection between gear manufacturing and heat treating is so strong. We both agreed that this was an opportunity to achieve a great deal of synergy, where someone attending one show could simply cross the aisle to learn about the other industry as well.

Since both events are exposition-focused with an added educational component, we worked closely together to make sure that our technical content would be complementary with as little repetition as possible. We want these presentations to augment, not compete with one another. At the ASM Heat Treating Society Conference and Exposition you’ll find presentations on subjects such as large gear manufacturing and heat treatment, design enhancements, energy cost control, and quenching system design. Some will relate specifically to the gear manufacturing industry, and others will explore new opportunities, like those found in renewable energies such as wind.

Again, we saw a lot of connection between our goals and the AGMA’s, and we both agreed that leveraging our separate strengths in a single location would create a more valuable experience for exhibitors and attendees alike. So we look forward to joining with the AGMA in presenting our ASM Heat Treating event alongside GEAR EXPO next September 15-17 in Indianapolis, and we hope your readers will stop by and spend some time with us!

MORE INFORMATION  Call (440) 338-5151 or go online to [hts.asminternational.org] or [www.asminternational.org].