The two current online special topics blasting technology and digitisation in our new category "Special Topics" provide an overview of current trends and developments in these areas. Blasting can be used in many different ways for components made of metallic materials. Workpieces made of plastic, sandstone, concrete and wood can all be blasted. The type of blasing process and blasting agent can be adapted to the particular application. Digitisation represents a far-reaching paradigm shift in industry, the aim of which is to create the intelligent factory. In such a factory, the real and the virtual world are closely interconnected. The use of state-of-the-art information and communication technologies opens up new opportunities for greater flexibility and automation in production processes.