Laser Marking 150,000 Names on the Heart of Steel

11th March 2019

Pryor has been at the heart of industrial marking since 1849 and is proud to be a part of the Heart of Steel project, in partnership with sculptor Steve Medhi and the British Heart Foundation.

Pryor is using the specially adapted Portable Laser Marking System to engrave 150,000 names onto the curved panels of The Heart of Steel which is set to become part of the widely anticipated Yorkshire landmark sculpture 'The Steel Man' Watch sculptor Steve Medhi laser marking names on The Heart of Steel for the very first time: Thousands of people have already signed up to add their own names, the names of relatives, or loved ones, to the Heart. Each name costs £20 and part of every donation will support the British Heart Foundation's lifesaving heart research programme. To add a name to the Heart, simply visit: The 'Heart of Steel' will eventually sit inside 'The Steel Man' - a 32 metre stainless steel sculpture which will act as a beacon for the Yorkshire region and become a landmark visitor attraction in an area that is steeped in industrial history. The Heart is 2.4m high and weighs 1138kg, and will be home to 150,000 names, all of which will be laser engraved using Pryor's Portable Laser Marker. The Portable Laser engraver is the ideal choice to carry out such a project as it provides ultra-precise, high speed, permanent laser engraving on large, immobile metal objects. The Portable Laser will engrave 90 names in 50 seconds, with each letter measuring 0.8mm in height. At this size clarity is key, and the Portable Laser Marker engraves with abundant detail. Laser marking is non-contact which means the engraving does not create any stress points or deformation to the material; an extremely important point in the case of the Heart of Steel. The Heart is made of 136 curved Inconel superalloy panels and is a complex shape. Therefore, Pryor developed a custom mask specifically for the Heart that enables the machine to mark the panels in a safe and secure way. Pryor has also modified the standard software to enable complete traceability of up to 150,000 names. The software records the panel and column location of every name marked, so individuals can locate the exact position of their inscription. Andy Hales, Project Sales Engineer at Pryor says, -The Heart of Steel project is one that fits Pryor perfectly. We were approached by the sculptor, Steve Mehdi, to laser engrave 150,000 names. As the only UK manufacturer of portable laser marking systems we are ideal to provide this service. In addition, as a Sheffield based company since 1849, we have a vested interest in the local area. -We are proud to have developed bespoke product components and software to enable this project to come to fruition. We are honoured to help create a legacy for the Sheffield and Yorkshire region, as well as supporting the vital work of the British Heart Foundation. The project began as a simple idea to create a landmark for the Yorkshire region and Steve was keen to create a sculpture that would embrace the past, present and the future of the region. Steve says, -It's been a massive challenge to develop a landmark artwork that truly represents the Yorkshire region, and it seemed only right that the Steel Man should have a Heart of Steel. We felt there would be a lot of interest from the public and so we came up with the idea of adding names to the Heart. For that, we needed a company that could inscribe the names, with precision and clarity. Pryor have helped me previously with the 'Tree of Life' at Rotherham Hospice so it seemed natural that I would turn to them to help with laser marking the Heart. Pryor are a local company and one that clearly had the expertise we were looking for. From the first conversation with them, I knew we were on our way to creating the final piece of the jigsaw and one that is helping our endeavour to raise vital funds for the British Heart Foundation as well. The Pryor and Steel Man teams make regular visits to Meadowhall Shopping Centre in Sheffield with the Portable Laser to engrave the thousands of names on the Heart of Steel. During the second visit to Meadowhall the engraving team were joined by a very special guest, local hero Tony Foulds, who witnessed his name being engraved on the Heart of Steel alongside the name of BBC journalist and presenter Dan Walker. The Pryor team were honoured to have marked Tony Foulds name onto the Heart of Steel. On 22 February 1944, Tony witnessed the B-17 Flying Fortress, known as Mi Amigo, crash at Endcliffe Park in Sheffield, during World War Two. Tony looks after Sheffield's memorial dedicated to the 10 pilots who died in the crash. With the help of BBC's Dan Walker, Tony organised a 75th anniversary flypast on 22nd February 2019 in honour of the pilots who died. The flypast involved 10 British and US military aircraft which set off from RAF Lakenheath in Suffolk.

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