Industrial Applications of Steel
Steel is the most widely used as well as the most recycled material in the world. Because steel is made in various forms, from stainless and high-temperature steels to flat carbon products, it is an extremely versatile metal. Along with its high strength and low production cost, this makes steel an ideal material for a wide variety of applications across multiple industries.
At Arizona Iron Supply in Phoenix, we pride ourselves on providing high quality steel to the iron fabricators of the Western United States for over 40 years. Below we have listed a few of the structural applications of steel in different industrial sectors:
The majority of steel goes to the construction industry—sustainable steel structures can be built quickly and relatively inexpensively. Depending on the conditions that the structure is exposed to, steel can be alloyed or surface treated differently to offer protection from various elements.
The development of efficient steel production techniques at the end of the 20th century led to the growth of railways around the world as well as the emergence of the high-rise building. Structural steel has a high strength-to-weight ratio which makes it ideal to use in the construction of large structures such as low and high-rise buildings, warehouses, bridges, factories, hospitals, etc. Many famous historical structures, such as the Empire State Building, are comprised primarily of steel.
All segments of the energy sector, including nuclear, wind power, electric and natural gas, rely on the use of steel. A majority of industrial structures such as transmission towers, pipelines, wind turbines, electromagnets, transformer cores, oil and gas wells are made using structural steel. Carbon, micro-alloyed, high strength and stainless steels are all used in the production of offshore platforms and pipelines due to the demanding environments these structures are often exposed to.
Steel is essential in the following spheres of the energy industry:
- All areas of renewable energy
- Nuclear and fossil fuel-based energy
- The production and distribution of energy
- Energy transport and distribution
- Fossil fuel power plants
Structural steel is used to manufacture trucks and cars, transmissions, trains, rails, ships, anchor chains, aircraft undercarriages, jet engine components, and more. The elasticity, corrosion resistance, tensile strength, ductility, malleability, and affordability of structural steel make it an ideal choice for engineers in the transportation industry.
Steel accounts for over 50% of the weight of an average car. Advanced high-strength steels (AHSS) provide a lightweight material that requires less energy to produce and reduces CO2 emissions.
People began using steel as a packaging material over 200 years ago. Steel is considered to be a useful material for packaging because it protects the products from water, air, light exposure, and contaminants, is lightweight, easy to open, and 100% recyclable. Packaging steels are often made from low carbon cold-rolled steel strip and are surface finished. The steel is tin plated to prevent corrosion and then coated with a polymer, lacquered, and printed.
Steel is used in a wide variety of packaging applications, such as containers and closures for human and pet foods, beverages, aerosols, personal care, household and automotive care products, industrial products and paints, as well as giftware and promotional products. It is also used for closing glass jars and bottles (bottle caps).
Other Industrial Applications of Steel
- Household appliances
- Industrial equipment—including farm vehicles and machinery
- Ship building—supertankers, submarines, boats, ladders, steel flooring and grating, stairs and fabricated sections of steel. Structural steel can withstand high amounts of external pressure, it does not rust and can be molded into any shape easily.
Steel Supplier in Phoenix and Tucson
As you can see, steel is the most preferred metal by architects, designers, engineers, contractors, and fabricators. It is highly durable, corrosion resistant, tensile and affordable, making the industrial applications of steel countless. At Arizona Iron Supply in Phoenix, our team of highly skilled structural steel fabricators can help you with all your industrial fabrication requirements. Give us a call if you have questions or stop by our warehouse to see our extensive inventory of high quality steel.