Eurocoke Advisory Board

Smithers Apex would like to thank all of the esteemed leaders that worked with us to ensure the Eurocoke Summit 2017 was the best yet. 

The 2017 Advisory Board was Co-Chaired by:

  • Dr. Neil J. Bristow, Principal & Managing Consultant, H&W Worldwide Consulting Pty Ltd
  • Ingomar Köhler, Consultant, PROCOMCO
  • Dr. Neil J. Bristow

    Principal/Managing Consultant H&W Worldwide Consulting Pty Ltd, Australia

    Dr. Bristow has been actively involved in the steel and steelmaking raw materials industries for over 22 years. During this time, he has led numerous investigations in coal and iron ore technical and market research, minerals strategy development, and market planning for BHP’s coal business, and was Chief Analyst for BHP Billiton’s Carbon Steel Materials Group, leading the Market Intelligence Group in Singapore.

    His key expertise in steel, metallurgical coal, iron ore, and manganese ore and ferroalloys, coupled with strategic vision and long term analysis on future directions in emerging markets, saw him as an early proponent of the rebirth of the global steel industry, the rise of China and of coal’s growth story, together with a strong belief in China’s emergence as a major seaborne metallurgical coal importer. He has been a strong advocate for India’s growing coal demand.

    In April 2009, he formed H&W Worldwide Consulting, putting his strong market analysis and strategy skills to good use across bulk commodities, including iron ore and coal –for both coking and thermal.

    As an internationally recognized expert in areas of steel and steelmaking raw materials, long term trends and scenarios, he has written and presented numerous publications at highly respected international conferences and meetings.

    • Australia
  • Jorge Caldeira

    Manager Technical Marketing Jellinbah Group, Brazil

    Jorge Caldeira has been actively involved in the ironmaking and ironmaking raw materials industries for 40 years. He is a graduated Metallurgical Engineering from the Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro in 1977 and got a Master´s degree in Coal Science at the Pennsylvania State University in the USA in 1981. Had an extension program with Professor Harry March at the University of Newcastle Upon Tyne in the UK in 1985.

    As a professional, he worked for CSN- Brazilian National Steel Co. for 16 years (12 years at their R&D Centre leading coal & coke projects and 4 years as General Manager Coke Oven and By-Products operations as well as Head of the Central Laboratories.

    Since 1993, he has started his own consulting company – COALBIZ - and has rendered technical and commercial services to various coal suppliers from Australia, USA and  Canada and to end user from various countries such as Brazil, India, Vietnam and Thailand. For the last 24 years, he has also been with the Australian Jellinbah Group where he currently serves as their Manager Technical Marketing.

  • Dr María Antonia Diez

    Research Scientist CSIC-INCAR, Spain

    María Antonia Diez is a research scientist of the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) at the National Coal Institute (INCAR) in Oviedo, Spain. She graduated and obtained her M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in Chemistry from the University of Oviedo (Spain). After her Ph.D., she undertook postdoctoral training over two years at the Northern Carbon Research Laboratories (NCRL) in the University of Newcastle upon Tyne (UK) and she has had short stays at the Wrocław University of Technology (Poland) and the CNRS of the Université d’Aix-Marseille III (France). Her research activities are in establishing the relationships between the properties of coking coals and carbon-based additives, coking process conditions and the structure and properties of the metallurgical coke. Her research interests also range from the composition and thermal behaviour of tar and pitch to environment protection, with special emphasis in the thermochemical feedstock recycling of organic wastes (plastics, biomass, bituminous sludge, oils,…) in co-processing with coal and coal products. She was Vice-director of INCAR for five years and head of the Science and Technology of Coal and Coal Products Department. She was a member of R&D Committees on a National and European level (European Coke Committee, Chemistry and Chemical Technology of the CSIC Commission, Coal Advisory Group of the RFCS-EU).

  • Ingomar Köhler

    Consultant PROCOMCO, Germany

    Ingomar Koehler is a former Senior Development Engineer with ThyssenKrupp. He is now retired and working in a consulting capacity with procomco. He has over 30 years experience in all areas of cokemaking including coal and coke analysis, design of charging coal blends, cokemaking technology/process engineering, commissioning of coke oven batteries, and research and development of new technologies for slot type and heat-recovery coke ovens and by-product plants.

    He performs plant inspections worldwide and elaborates feasibility studies whose findings and results are implemented in practice jointly with his customers. Ingomar Koehler is a pragmatist who managed to acquire experience and know-how in the fields of research and development and passes his wide-spread know-how of cokemaking in training courses as well as in seminars for plant management, operators, and young design engineers.

    • Germany
  • Aleksander Sobolewski

    Director Institute for Chemical Processing of Coal, Poland

    In 1986 he graduated Faculty of Technology and Chemical Engineering of the Silesian Technical University - Gliwice (Poland) and obtained Ph. D. at the same University in 1993. The main interest of his research works include coke making technology and thermal processing of solid fuels and wastes.

    At present he is Director of the Institute of Chemical Processing of Coal in Zabrze. He is a member of Polish Standardisation Commission, expert of Polish Ecological Chamber and member of European Coke Committee.

    His is an author of more then 100 scientific and technical papers and 10 patents.

    • Poland
  • Jan Soonius

    Managing Director HeatTeQ, The Netherlands

    Jan Soonius is the Managing Director of HeaTeQ, where he is active in Engineering, Project/Site Management & Construction Projects in Iron & Steel, Non-Ferrous, Aluminum & other Heavy Industries.

    Key Activity is Refractory Installation Work. Soonius has been with in this position since May of 2009.

    Prior to joining HeaTeQ, Jan was a member of the Lizmontages Group and both Project manager and managing Director for Prison Refractories. Soonius began his career with 23 years of service as Construction manager at Hoogovens/Corus, where he built his expertise in Refractory Engineering & Construction of Blast Furnaces, Hot Blast Stoves and Coke Batteries.

    • Netherlands
  • Viktor Stiskala

    Head of Technology Coal & Coke - Senior Manager, Hot Metal Production ThyssenKrupp Steel Europe AG, Germany

    Viktor Stískala is a Dipl. Engineer in cokemaking and ironmaking with 25 years’ experience in coal research and cokemaking process. Before joining ThyssenKrupp in 2012 on position of Senior manager he worked as R&D Coal and Coke Cluster leader and Program coordinator in Arcelor Mittal and was a manager of ArcelorMittal Corporate Coke Lab in Ostrava, Czech Republic. Over his career in the Czech Republic he served in two election periods as President of the Czech Cokemaking Society and was also national representative in European Coke Committee.

    • Germany
  • Jim Truman

    Director - Global Metallurgical Coal Markets Wood Mackenzie, USA

    Jim Truman is the Director - Global Metallurgical Coal Markets with Wood Mackenzie. He is a geologist by training, having attended West Virginia University and the University of South Carolina. Prior to joining Wood Mackenzie, he worked for a number of major coal companies and has specialized in the evaluation of the Central Appalachian coal industry. He now focuses on trends in global metallurgical coal trade.

    • USA
  • Dr Hardarshan S. Valia

    President Coal Science Inc., USA

    Dr. Hardarshan Valia started his career in steel industry in 1979 at R&D Laboratories of Inland Steel Company (now Arcelor Mittal) in East Chicago, Indiana as a research engineer and after 22 years retired as Staff Scientist. Thereafter, he started his own consulting firm, Coal Science Inc His expertise is in the field of coal selection and blend design for non-recovery and slot oven coke making, prediction of coking coal quality of coal reserve, use of poor quality coals and additives in coke making, coke behavior inside the blast furnace and coal selection for use as Blast Furnace PCI.  Dr. Valia has published more than 85 scientific articles and various book chapters including in Making, Shaping, and Treating of Steel,  and co-authored a book entitled Indiana Coals and the Steel Industry, and is a contributor to American Iron and Steel Institute’s web site. He has been honored with the Joseph Becker Award by the Iron & Steel Society for distinguished contributions in the field of coal carbonization and technology. He also received Joseph Kapitan Award by the Association for Iron & Steel Technology (for best paper)  and was the recipient of the American Iron & Steel Institute Medal for a co-authored paper. He also was invited to participate in the Eminent Visor Program sponsored by CCSD/CSIRO, Australia. Dr. Valia received his M.A. in Geology from Bryn Mawr College and Ph.D. in Geology from Boston University.