Herbert Trenkler was instrumental in the development of the Linz-Donawitz process, which was first realized on an industrial scale in Linz in 1952. The LD process is an oxygen blowing process which makes it possible to convert high-carbon pig iron into low-carbon steel. The rapid worldwide spread of the LD process paralleled the breakthrough of large blast furnace technology and the transition from ingot to continuous casting. Currently, more than 60 percent of the world’s crude steel is produced using the LD process.
Trenkler also did fundamental work on blowing phosphorus-rich pig iron in the LD converter and was instrumental in the development of burner heads for tiltable 200 t Siemens-Martin furnaces. In addition, he was active as a propagandist and lobbyist for the LD process he helped to develop. Trenkler studied physics at the Technical University of Munich from 1926 and moved to the Montanistische Hochschule Leoben in 1927, where he obtained his doctorate.