100 years of research

2 December, 2022

Festive times were had when Swerim hosted its members' day on 26 October and also took the opportunity to celebrate 100 years as a metals research institute.

The year was 1921 and Professor Carl Benedick was the first director of the then newly founded Metallographic Institute. The dress code for engineers during the first half of the twentieth century dictated formal evening dress. This was duly noted by Hans Östling, research engineer at Swerim, who arrived appropriately attired to celebrate the occasion. He also treated a gathering of fascinated guests to a slide-show journey focussing on 100 years of metallurgical research.

"One of the instruments presented in the images from the previous century is a rolling mill from 1921, which we still use regularly in Kista. However, several safety features have been added since Bendick's day," noted Hans Östling, who, in addition to pursuing his ongoing research, is an avid historian of engineering research. The Metallographic Institute, which opened officially with great ceremony in1922, was a predecessor of other industrial research institutes which were established in the1940s and were financed with a combination of industry money and state funding. The Metallographic Institute was eventually renamed. Four years ago, in October 2018, operations were further broadened with the merger of Swerea KIMAB and Swerea MEFOS.

"In addition to the benefit accruing from our collective expertise, the merger brings another advantage," explains CEO Pontus Sjöberg with a smile. “Next year, when we hold our Swerim Day at our research facilities in Norrbotten, we will also celebrate 60 years of research conducted in Luleå.”