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How the company developed

1971 ASO was established

ASO – Acciai Speciali Ospitaletto – was established in 1971 by Aldo Artioli, a businessman and metallurgical chemistry expert.

Since then ASO has continued to grow, in terms of the workforce and their skills, as well as technological aspects, expanding its areas of specialisation, opening up to new international markets, without losing its local tradition, and combining innovation, research and customer service.

1972 the first 10-tonne furnace

The first 10-tonne furnace was installed in 1972. Initially the company supplied end users with a highly diverse range of ingots, but later it decided to serve mainly forges, paving the way for future development.
A 30-tonne furnace was installed in 1976 to meet increasing market demand.

1990 the first ladle furnace

1990 saw the installation of the first ladle furnace (LF) and the first vacuum degassing (VD) plant, the result of ASO’s ongoing commitment to investing heavily in technology and human resources. 

A second LF and an automatic ferroalloy charging system were added in 1995 to increase overall capacity.

2002 the new smelting furnace

In early 2002 the existing smelting furnace was replaced with a new one of a variable capacity of 30-50 tonnes. A second, more modern, vacuum degassing system was built and installed the same year.

2006 the third LF and VD system

A third LF and an adjacent VD system were installed in 2006 to increase ASO’s capacity and guarantee excellent product quality as a result of accurate control of furnace holding times.

2007 the VAR installation

As part of its ongoing process of innovation, ASO installed a vacuum arc remelting (VAR) system in 2007, mainly for steel grades for the aerospace industry. This enabled the company to accept orders for steels with a high degree of purity, using highly effective VD, thereby increasing the range of application for ASO products.

Between 2005 and 2008, following the increase in production capacity and rising demand from emerging markets, the company also upgraded its battery of heat-treatment furnaces, and currently has 13 hoods for controlled ingot cooling and 14 heat treatment furnaces.
In 2008 ASO installed a 35-tonne induction furnace and a new off-gas extraction system in place of the old one, in line with its policy of safeguarding the environment as far as possible.

2010 ASO Forge

A new facility, called ASO Forge, was founded in 2010 to produce forged bars from ingots made at the steel mill. This met the group’s need to extend the production chain to help it meet the new challenges of international markets as comprehensively as possible and consistently with its corporate mission. This new 15,000m2 facility stands on 25,000 m2 of land in Castegnato (Brescia), very close to the new Brescia-Bergamo-Milan motorway.

2011 SPS S.p.a.

In 2011 the ASO Group took over SPS S.p.A., a company near Verona that produces and processes special and stainless steel grades, and boasts twenty years’ experience cold-processing round bars, chrome-plating being its main activity.

2013 the merger of SPS and ASO Siderurgica

The merger of SPS and ASO Siderurgica in October 2013 resulted in ASO Siderurgica S.p.A., a company which runs four production sites, has a 320-strong workforce and makes a wide range of steels for specific high-tech applications.