Steel is a common and yet misunderstood material. Not natural, it comes from the alloy of natural raw materials, mainly iron. Solid, resistant, infinitely recyclable and easy to maintain, it is easily modular and upgradable and allows a very wide range of parts to be made, from small and light to large and heavy. Discover the multiple uses of this interesting material in the fields of construction and renovation.
Steel, an evolving and modular material
Steel is a metal alloy that contains mainly iron, but also carbon up to a maximum of 2%. It is therefore not a natural material, but a material resulting from the transformation of raw materials of natural origin.
Depending on the quality of steel that one wishes to obtain and the use that it is envisaged to make of it, chemical elements can be added to the alloy, which makes it possible to produce a large multitude of different steels.
There are three main families of steels:
- Unalloyed steels : non-alloy steels are those intended for general use, in construction, the production of tools and weldable parts.
- Low alloy, non-stainless steels : these high resistance allies are characterized by the fact that the added elements are in quantity less than 5% of the total.
- High alloy steels, stainless steels : these alloys with very high mechanical resistance are intended for specific uses. They are very resistant to wear and corrosion.
The advantages of this material
Steel is a very strong and almost indestructible material, which explains its use in the manufacture of armored products. It allows the realization of light and tiny parts as well as massive, imposing and heavy parts.
This easy-to-maintain material has the advantage of being indefinitely recyclable.
A material with multiple uses in renovation and construction
The manufacture of the material
The steel, which is not natural, is made in several main stages:
- Preparation of raw materials : the material comes from the cast iron sector, i.e. iron ores, and/or the scrap metal sector, resulting from the recycling of steel. The raw material is melted between 1400 and 1500°C then the additional chemical elements are added to it.
- The work of solidification : this step consists of the formation of semi-finished products, either by continuous casting, before being cut as required, or by casting into ingots, in the form of molded products.
- Transformation into finished product : the shaping of semi-finished products into finished products is done by rolling, casting or forging. It is thus possible to manufacture any type of product.
How to use steel?
Steel is a light, solid and resistant material which makes it possible to produce a wide variety of parts and to be used in a wide range of fields and applications (see steel IPNs). It makes it possible to manufacture flat products, long products and tubal products in particular.
The sectors that have the greatest use of it are the fields of building and bridge construction, the design of machinery and tools, the automotive field, locksmithing and its derivatives, health, food, packaging and shielding. .
To find out about the other areas concerned, see the uses of steel here.
Steel is a very present material and more and more used in renovations and constructions because of its lightness and its great resistance.