While at the huge construction site in the USA the new steelworks was taking up concrete shape, a delegation of representatives of the plant operator, investors and future customers of Big River Steel already produced the works' first steel during a visit to the SMS group in Germany - admittedly as part of a plant simulation.
In the SMS group test center, experts of the SMS group had set up major components of the automation systems, complete with fully functional control cabinets, computers, control desks and the steelworks' software. This allowed them to thoroughly test these components in near-reality simulations and to train the operators well ahead of the installation on site. This innovative procedure - which the SMS group calls Plug & Work - later on markedly reduced the time to start of production.
Daniel J. Murray, Board Member of Big River Steel, was impressed: