About AIST

Keith Howell (left) presented the first-place 2023 AIST Hunt-Kelly Outstanding Paper Award to Patrick Hansert (right).

Hunt-Kelly Outstanding Paper Award (AIME)

►Nomination Form
►Hunt-Kelly Outstanding Paper Award Recipients
Hunt-Kelly Outstanding Paper Award (Hunt Recipients)
Hunt-Kelly Outstanding Paper Award (Kelly Recipients)
►In Memoriam of John Frederick Kelly

History and Purpose

The AIST Hunt-Kelly Outstanding Paper Award was established in 2004 by combining the ISS Robert W. Hunt Award (1920) and the AISE John F. Kelly Award (1943). A technical paper of the year will be selected each year from the author or authors, not necessarily members of the association, of the best published paper of the previous year.

Nomination Process

Nominations for papers from AIST conference proceedings shall be made by completing Sections 1, 2, 3 and 6 of the AIST Award Nomination Form. Technology Committee best paper award recipients from the previous year will be automatically included as candidates for this award.


The paper will be selected for excellence, originality, relevance to the technology (applied or fundamental) of the iron and steel industry, and for the advancement of engineering and operating practice in the steel industry. The papers to be considered are those published by the association in the conference proceedings within the prior year.  


A cash award will be presented to the first, second and third place recipients in the amount of US$5,000, US$2,500 and US$1,000, respectively. Award total is distributed evenly to all authors identified on a multi-authored paper. Funding for this program provided in part by the generous support of the American Institute of Mining, Metallurgical and Petroleum Engineers (AIME).  AIST is a proud member society of AIME, founded 1871.

Selection Process

This award is selected by the AIST Hunt-Kelly Outstanding Paper Award Sub-committee consisting of Past Presidents, Distinguished Member and Fellows, and past recipients of the Howe and Brimacombe lecture awards.

About Robert Woolston Hunt 

Hunt learned the skills of the ironworking industry in 1857, while he was employed at John Burnish & Co., an iron rolling mill in Pottsville, Pa. In 1859, he joined an analytical laboratory in Philadelphia, where he took a course in analytical chemistry. When his study was completed, in 1860 he joined Wood, Morrell & Co. as a chemist and established an iron and steel works laboratory in Johnstown, Pa., for the Cambria Iron Co. By the spring of 1861, he was working as night foreman for the Elmira rolling mill in Elmira, N.Y.

He served in the Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry in the American Civil War from 1861 to 1865. Returning to civilian life, he went to work for the Cambria Co. and was named superintendent of the experimental Bessemer steel works in Wyandotte, Mich. He remained in charge of the Wyandotte Bessemer Works until 1866, when he returned to Johnstown, where the Cambria Co. was erecting a Bessemer plant. Once the Cambria Bessemer plant was put into operation, Hunt, along with John E. Fry and Alexander L. Holley, introduced a new bottom casting method for which the three received a U.S. patent.

Hunt remained with the Cambria Co. until 1873, when he became superintendent of the Bessemer works of John A. Griswald & Co. in Troy, N.Y. He would remain with Griswald's company until 1888. In 1883, he was elected to serve a term as the president of the American Institute of Mining Engineers. Moving to Chicago in the spring of 1888, he started the business of Messrs. Robert W. Hunt & Co. in April, which engaged in the business of inspection, testing and consultation.

He was elected president of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers in November 1890, serving his term during 1891–1892. In 1893, he was named president of the Western Society of Engineers. He was again elected president of the American Institute of Mining Engineers in 1906. He became president of the American Society for Testing and Materials in 1912 and vice president of the International Association for Testing Materials in 1914. He was awarded the John Fritz Medal in 1912 for "his contributions to the early development of the Bessemer process." Named a trustee of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1886, he was bestowed the honorary degree of Doctor of Engineering by Rensselaer in 1916. In 1923, he received the Washington Award.

His estate endowed the Hunt Professorship in Metallurgical Engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. The Robert W. Hunt Co. continues to operate to this day, becoming a subsidiary of U.S. Laboratories Inc. in 2001.

About John Frederick Kelly 

John Frederick Kelly was born in McKeesport, Pa., in 1880, and lived in Pittsburgh all his life. In his early years, before becoming associated with the Westinghouse Electric & Manufacturing Co., he was connected with various steel plants in the area. In 1909, he left Westinghouse, where he was employed in the office of manager of works, to go to the electrical department of the National Tube Co. in McKeesport. In 1917, he was elected national secretary of the Association of Iron and Steel Electrical Engineers. In 1918, he left the National Tube Co., and established the A.I.&S.E.E. offices in Pittsburgh. He was later made managing director of the Association and editor of Iron and Steel Engineer.

Kelly was one of the best-known figures in the iron and steel industry. He knew and studied the industry from every angle. This knowledge and experience he used to build the A.I.&S.E.E. to its present prominent position among the national engineering societies. In his long career with the Association, and under his guidance, Iron and Steel Engineer was founded as well as the Combustion, Lubrication, Mechanical and Welding Divisions. The original Electrical Division was founded in 1907. It was his dream and ambition that the Association should answer every engineering need in the iron and steel industry. Toward the achievement of that result he labored unceasingly and tirelessly.