Jesenice, Thursday, 7 June 2018 – A grand unveiling at SIJ Acroni saw the presentation of a refurbished small Pelton wheel. Once an indispensible ironworkers’ aid turned symbol of ironworking milestones will greet colleagues and business partners outside of the SIJ Acroni administrative building.

The demanding restoration, which was the result of the dedicated cooperation of a group of enthusiastic co-workers at SIJ Acroni, was presented by the leader and initiator of the project, Luka Novak, explaining, “While the large Pelton wheel was already on display in the southwest of Jesenice, near the Karavanke tunnel, the small Pelton wheel was ‘resting’ in Javornik, next to the quarto plate mill. Well, not anymore. The now refurbished wheel dominates the outside of the SIJ Acroni administrative building.”

The small Pelton wheel, weighing 38 tonnes and spanning 4.8 metres in diameter, was able to do 70 rpm in its heyday. In conjunction with the large Pelton wheel, it provided the main drive for the production lines of the then new rolling mill of the Carniolan Industrial Company between 1902 and 1979, and was considered one of the largest single castings in the world during this time.

Branko Polanc, the Managing Director of SIJ Acroni, told on the occasion, “The small Pelton wheel was once of vital importance to the iron workers, because it performed a truly critical task – providing the main drive at the rolling mill, so it is only fitting that it takes today its place of honour outside of the SIJ Acroni administrative building. May it serve as a reminder of the difficult and dedicated work we still to today – with different methods, but with the same devotion.”

“We are proud of the 600 years of iron making tradition providing the basis for steel makers to write successful stories, as evidenced by the awards received every year. We sincerely congratulate the company SIJ Acroni for maintaining the technical heritage and we encourage further cooperation,” Irena Lačen Benedičič, the Director of the Gornjesavski muzej Jesenice museum stated.

The event also presented the vision for preserving the heritage in the future and announced the restoration of the board “Daddy, come home safe!”, which once served as a unique reminder to the iron workers of the important aspect of worker safety. The board, which will serve the same purpose in the future and will be an important element of the SIJ Group’s drive for raising awareness on professional health and safety titled “Working Safely, Staying Healthy“, was symbolically handed to the restorer Katarina Plasin.

Photos by Borut Žigon (from left to right):
1. Branka Smole, moderator; Luka Novak, head of the restoration project; Branko Polanc, Managing Director of SIJ Acroni; Albreht Anton, former shop manager of the quarto plate mill
2. The ceremonious ribbon on the small Pelton wheel was cut by Branko Polanc, the Managing Director of SIJ Acroni
3. The Jesenice-Kranjska Gora brass band kept spirits high for the guests and SIJ Acroni colleagues


The SIJ Group is the largest vertically integrated metallurgical group in Slovenia, occupying with its products leading positions on European and global niche steel markets. Alongside the Metallurgy Division (its core business), the SIJ Group is also composed of the Poultry Division (the Perutnina Ptuj Group). Together, the two divisions created revenues of 1.012 billion Euros in 2017, 103.8 million Euros of earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA), and a net profit of 15 million Euros. Both divisions created most of the 2017 revenues in foreign markets. Steel exports amounted to 821.5 million Euros, which is 81.1 percent of the total revenues.

Further information:
SIJ – Slovenian Steel Industry, d.d.
Mag. Sara Wagner, Head of Corporate Communication
Telephone: +386 1 242 98 27
Mobile phone: +386 41 313 532