Types Of Steel Based On Various Factors Engineering Essay

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All steels contain a small amount of incidental elements left over from steelmaking. These include manganese, silicon, or aluminum from the deoxidation process conducted in the ladle, as well as phosphorus and sulfur picked up from ore and fuel in the blast furnace. Copper and other metals, called residuals, are introduced by scrap used in the steelmaking furnace. Because all these elements together normally constitute less than 1 percent of the steel, they are not considered.

Based on Application

The many applications of steel demonstrate best the great versatility of this material. Most often, steel consumers' needs are met by carbon steels. Good examples are sheets for:-

Deep-drawn automobile bodies and appliances made of low-carbon steels

Medium-carbon structural steels and plates employed in all kinds of construction

High-carbon railroad rails, and wires at all carbon levels used for hundreds of items

The addition of costly alloys begins when combinations of properties are requested that cannot be met by carbon steels. ...

High-strength low-alloy steels

The demand for high strength, good weldability, and higher resistance to atmospheric corrosion is met by a group called the high-strength low-alloy (HSLA) steels. These grades have low carbon levels (e.g., 0.05 percent) and contain small amounts of one or a combination of elements such as chromium, nickel, molybdenum, vanadium, titanium, and niobium. HSLA steels are used for oil or gas pipelines, ships, offshore structures, and storage tanks.

Free-machining steels

This group, developed for good machinability and fabricated into bolts, screws, and nuts, contains up to 0.35 percent sulfur and 0.35 percent lead; also, it sometimes has small additions of tellurium or selenium. These elements form many inclusions, which are normally avoided but are desired in this application because they break the long, hazardous strings of metal that are usually formed during machining into small chips. This keeps tools and work pieces clean, improves tool life, and permits machining at higher speeds.

Wear-resistant steels

Another group is the wear-resistant steels, made into wear plates for rock-processing machinery, crushers, and power shovels. These are austenitic steels that contain about 1.2 percent carbon and 12 percent manganese. The latter element is a strong austenizer; that is, it keeps steel austenitic at room temperature. Manganese steels are often called Hadfield steels, after their inventor, Robert Hadfield.

Wear resistance is brought about by the high work-hardening capabilities of these steels; this in turn is generated during the pounding (i.e., deforming) of the surface.

Bearing steels

One important group that well demonstrates the enormous impact of material developments on engineering possibilities is the steels used for roller and ball bearings. These steels often contain 1 percent carbon, 1.2 percent chromium, 0.25 percent nickel, and 0.25 percent molybdenum and are very hard after heat treatment. Most important, however, they are extremely clean, having been purged of practically all inclusions by vacuum treatment of the liquid steel. Inclusions are very harmful in bearings because they create stress concentrations that result in low fatigue strength.

Stainless steels

This outstanding group receives its stainless characteristics from an invisible, self-healing chromium oxide film that forms when chromium is added at concentrations greater than 10.5 percent. There are three major groups, the austenitic, the ferritic, and the martensitic.

The best corrosion resistance is obtained in austenitic stainless steels. Their microstructures consist of very clean fcc crystals in which all alloying elements are held in solid solution. These steels contain 16 to 26 percent chromium and up to 35 percent nickel, which, like manganese, is a strong austenizer. (Indeed, manganese is sometimes used instead of nickel.)

Electrical steels

An important group of steels, necessary for the generation and transmission of electrical power, is the high-silicon electrical steels. Electromagnets for alternating current are always made by laminating many thin sheets, which are insulated in order to minimize the flow of eddy currents and thereby reduce current losses and heat generation. A further improvement is achieved by adding up to 4.5 percent silicon, which imparts high electrical resistance.

Based on Shape and surface

In principle, steel is formed into either flat products or long products, both of which have either a hot-rolled, cold-formed, or coated surface.

Flat products

Flat products include plates, hot-rolled strip and sheets, and cold-rolled strip and sheets; all have a great variety of surface conditions. They are rolled from slabs, which are considered a semi finished product and are normally not sold. Provided by either a continuous caster or rolled from ingots by a slabbing mill, slabs are 50 to 250 millimetres thick, 0.6 to 2.6 metres wide, and up to 12 metres long (that is, 2 to 10 inches thick, 24 to 104 inches wide, and up to 40 feet long).

Plates are hot-rolled either from slabs or directly from ingots.

Long products

Long products are made of either blooms or billets, which are, like slabs, considered a semi finished product and are cast by a continuous caster or rolled at a blooming mill. Billets have a cross section 50 to 125 millimetres square, and blooms are 125 to 400 millimetres square. In practice, they are not precisely distinguished by these dimensions, and there is considerable overlap in the use of the two terms.

Long products include bars, rods and wires, structural shapes and rails, and tubes. Bars are long products with square, rectangular, flat, round, hexagonal, or octagonal cross sections.

Other types of Steel:-

High Speed Steel

High Speed Steel

Hot Work Tools Steel

It has features such as corrosion resistance, thermal conductivity and thermal resistance. Some of the common application areas of this type of steel are as follows:

• Die casting

• Automobile industry

• Consumer appliances

• Medical sector

Pneumatic steel

Pneumatic steel

Pneumatic tools are manufactured using low carbon steel. Use of low carbon steel ensures that the benefits of a case hardened skin are achieved without the risk of core brittleness. Some of the features of Pneumatic Steel are as follows:

• High tensile strength

• Durability

• Dimensional accuracy

• Corrosion resistance

Stainless steel

Stainless steel

Stainless Steel is the most popular and reliable of different types of steel that are available in the market. Stainless steel is used for better strength and longer service life and it is available in different grades. Some of the stainless steel products offered are as follows:

• Flanges & fittings

• Coils

• Pipes

• Sheets

Mild steel

Mild steel

Mild Steel Products come under comprehensive range and are used for various applications across different industries. Some of the products under this range are as follows:

• Pipes / tubes

• Pipes fittings

• Flanges

• Rods

• Flats & circles

• Sheets

• Plates

• Shims

Non-shrinking Die Steel

Non-shrinking Die Steel

Non-Shrinking Die Steel or steel putty/stick are basically steel filled putty which is mainly used for reclamation and repair of jobs that require longer working time. Non -shrinking die steel offers excellent tensile strength, corrosion resistance and durability. Some of the common application areas of steel putty are as follows:

• Machine bed

• Tank

• Flange face

• Leveling

• Compressor

• Hydraulic ram

• Casing

• Pipe

Shock Resisting Steel

Shock Resistant Steel is suitable for heavy duty applications and services. This steel has excellent load bearing and shock resisting capacities which makes it ideal for usage in automobile, engineering and construction industries. Shock Resisting Steel has high content of manganese for resisting shock and abrasion. Manganese steel is used in manufacturing pans, chains and rollers for resisting shock & abrasion from heavy ore and stone.

Shock Resisting Steel

Carbon Tool Steel has high surface hardness and core toughness. This type of steel provides excellent resistance to wear, tear, impact and shock. Several tools and equipment are made using carbon steel, some of which are enlisted below:

• Cutting and punching dies

• Shear blades

• Hollow and massive embossing dies

• Milling cutters

• Scrapers

• Cutting tools

• Twist drills

• Reamers

• Paper knives

• Wood working tools

• Thread cutting tools

• Chisels

• Tube drawing plugs

Constructional Steel

Constructional Steel

Constructional Steel bars are widely used by construction companies, builders and developers. These bars are made using top grade steel and are also tested on different quality parameters. Some of the features of this type of steel are as follows:

• High tensile strength

• Assured durability

• Corrosion and abrasion resistance

Spring Steel

Spring Steel

This steel is extensively used across different industries such as construction, engineering and automotive, owing to their features like superior finish, durability and high tensile strength. Some of the applications of spring steel are enlisted below:

• Braiding

• Knitting

• Weaving

• Cold heading

• Electro-polishing

• Welding

• Free cutting

Case Hardening Steel

Case Hardening Steel

This type of steel comes in different forms such as sheet, wire and rod to meet the specific requirements of the various industries.


In spite of the regional and cultural differences, India has sustained as the single largest democracy in the world for most of the time after independence.


In the domestic market, financial services, real estate, infrastructure and telecommunications have performed outstandingly over the last two years. The biotech, telecoms and broadband sectors have witnessed double digit growth in the last few years and this trend is expected to continue in the future. All these are greatly affected by the plans, policies and procedures of the government.


On November 3, 2005, the Union Government cleared National Steel Policy (NSP). NSP has set  a production target of 100 mn. tones by 2019-20.

The Cabinet Committee  on Economic Affairs (CCEA) approved NSP.  The policy is targeting a compounded annual growth of 7.3% in domestic steel production in the next 15 years.

The NSP has spelt out a strategy of increasing demand by strengthening delivery chains particularly in rural sector.  Efforts will also be made to improve supply by removing policy bottlenecks and by creating spare capacity.


In terms of economic growth, the reforms initiated in 1991 have led to average GDP growth of 8.2% during 2003-2009, FDI inflows increased by 13% in 2009 over 2008 and an corresponding increase was made in the months of 2009-2010 over 2008-2009 (except for September 2009). India has many workforce advantages as its workforce is among highest in the world.


Riding on a booming economy and escalating demand, the domestic steel consumption has grown manifold in the last few years. The Indian steel industry has registered an average growth rate of more than 10% CAGR in output in the last five years. During the same period, steel consumption has also moved in perfect lockstep and has maintained a growth rate of 10%.

According to World Steel Dynamics, (WSD) the Indian steel industry has entered into massive growth in steel demand as well as steel making capacities. The key growth drivers for the steel industry and the brief description of each driver are laid out below.

Construction: The construction industry has been witnessing a growth rate of 12%-14% in recent times. Steel construction is now identified with speed and since India is in need of speedy project implementation, steel is the best alternative for fast track construction. With economy surging ahead and expected increase in income levels of population, it is believed that demand for steel from this sector will continue to grow at current rates if not improve

Automobile: The domestic automobile industry has also grown at more than double-digit rates in the past five years. The Indian automobile sector is the second fastest growing market after China and has emerged as a prime demand driver for alloy steel. Automobile sector which is experiencing growth and competition is likely to be one of the major drivers for steel consumption in the coming years and most likely, its contribution in the overall demand pie is likely to improve from the current levels.

Auto components Industry: During the last five years, auto components market has grown at 19% CAGR, led by both robust domestic demand as well as exports. India is fast emerging as hub for auto components. International companies such as General Motors, Ford, Daimler Chrysler, Toyota and Volkswagen are outsourcing auto parts from India as it has cost advantage with regard to forgings and castings. Also, the growing domestic automobile industry, which relies on steel industry for its parts manufacturing, will enhance the demand for steel in India.

Infrastructure: Infrastructure sector comprises of roads, railways, airports and power. The 11th Five-year plan has lined up huge investments in all the above related sectors of infrastructure. The sector wise anticipated investment are $200bn in power, $80bn in railways, $48bn in roads, $13bn in ports and $9bn in airports. Because of surge in the above activities, the demand for long products of steel will be increasing in years ahead.

Consumer Durables: The consumer durables sector has also been witnessing robust growth. It has grown at an average of 10% per annum and is expected to grow at double-digit rates for coming years. The share of white goods and utensils is predominant in India. The domestic appliances market which includes spin driers of washing machine, almirahs, thermo ware, water filters, dishwashers, microwave ovens, catering equipments, cutlery, furniture etc have opened new opportunities for steel consumption, thus ensuring a steadily growing trend of steel off take.

Oil & Gas Industry: Oil & gas sector is the major consumer of steel tubes and pipes. The pipe consumption in oil & gas sector is expected to grow at a rate of 25% CAGR as this sector is set to witness massive capital investment. Apart from laying cross-country pipelines, exploration and production activities are also experiencing strong growth in both international as well as domestic markets.

Thus, in view of the robust growth expected in all the above mentioned sectors, there is no reason to believe that demand will slowdown in the coming future. Infact, if one were to go by government projections, then the demand is likely to increase at a CAGR of 11% until 2020. What gives us further conviction is the low per capita consumption of steel in India, which at 40 kgs currently is way below the world average of 150 kgs. Thus, the next few years are likely to be very good for the Indian steel manufacturers as far as demand is concerned.


The enthusiasm of corporate sector has not dampened instead of India's poor performance being reflected on the social indicators by its 134th position among 182 countries in HDI Human Development Index.


Employment is expected to continue to decline due to consolidation and further automation of the steelmaking process.

Employers staffing production and maintenance jobs increasingly prefer individuals with 2-year degrees in mechanical or electrical technology.

Opportunities will be best for engineers and skilled production and maintenance workers.

The steel industry provided about 159,000 wage and salary jobs in 2008. Employment in the steel industry is broken into two major sectors: iron and steel mills and ferroalloy production, which employed 98,900 workers; and steel products from purchased steel, which employed 60,100 workers. The steel industry traditionally has been located in the eastern and mid-western regions of the country, where iron ore, coal, or one of the other natural resources required for steel are found. Even today, about 42 percent of steelworkers are employed in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Indiana. The growth of EAFs has allowed steelmaking to spread to virtually all parts of the country, although many firms find lower cost rural areas the most attractive. Although most steel mills are small, about 88 percent of the jobs in 2008 were in establishments employing at least 100 workers.



The steel making technology in India is on the verge of entering the next generation with major players concentrating on up gradation and modernization of facilities. The focus is on making use of iron ore fines to produce steel.

The front runner is Steel Authority of India Ltd which is in discussions with two foreign steel majors for using this technology. Use of iron ore fines will help in cost efficiency. A joint venture with POSCO is almost ready. The POSCO tie up will help SAIL get FINEX technology. Today, India doesn't have technology to use iron ore fines.

SAIL is also in talks with Japanese steel-maker Kobe Steel for setting up a plant near Durgapur, where Kobe will provide its patented ITMK-3 technology that uses iron ore in the form of nuggets.

Also, SAIL plans to use new technologies, such as coke dry quenching facilities, in coke ovens in the five blast furnaces that it is upgrading. This would not only help the company increase coke production, but also reduce its coking coal demands. SAIL also spends about INR 150 crore annually on its in house research and development.

The blast furnaces productivity will increase by almost 1,500 tonnes per day by equipping them with top pressure recovery turbines and auxiliary fuel injection systems.

Jindal Steel and Power Ltd's production cost is expected to be lower by 15% to 20% by using hot briquetted iron. JSPL recently acquired Shadeed Iron and Steel Co's new plant in Oman, which has this technology.

JSW Steel has tied up with Japan's JFE Steel to target the fast-growing automobile sector. The two companies will work together on energy efficiency, environmental management, improvement of production process quality and yield.


India has an exhaustive legal framework governing all aspects of business. The regulatory regime in India has comprehensive laws that have been amended from time to time, which has benefited business entities, although the implementation of these regulations continues to be a major issue.


The Government has also approved the National Steel Policy (NSP) in November 2005. The long-term goal of the NSP is for India to have a modern and efficient steel industry of world standards. The focus of the policy would therefore be to achieve global competitiveness not only in terms of cost, quality and product-mix but also in terms of global benchmarks of efficiency and productivity.

• The policy targets to increase steel production at a compounded annual growth rate of 7.3% to 110 mt by 2019-2020. It projects domestic consumption to grow at annual growth rate of 6.9% to 90 mt during this period. The policy envisages the share of exports to increase to 25% from present share of 11%.

• The government would also encourage investments in creation of an additional modern iron ore mining and beneficiation capacity of 200 mt. under this policy

Recent increase in infrastructure spending is also expected to have a positive impact on the steel demand. Major investments planned in infrastructure sector are, national highway network, major ports, and airports. The Government also proposes to undertake measures to promote usage of steel in bridges, crash barriers, flyovers and building construction.

100% FDI is allowed under the automatic route for metallurgy and processing of all metals


India is endowed with rich biodiversity, and maintains a comprehensive regulatory framework and institutions for the protection of the environment. However, implementation remains sluggish.


With steel production surpassing projections, the country would, amidst tighter environmental laws, require to find suitable technologies and processes for optimum use of its limited iron ore and energy resources. With current "conservative" projections of Indian steel production reaching 80 mt by 2011-12 and 175 mt by 2019-20, the country should move ahead in a planned way.

At the same time global challenges like climatic changes taking place due to industrial development need to be reversed with urgency while making industrial processes energy-efficient as energy resources were depleting.

Large quantities of slime and fines also get generated while processing iron ore, most of which remain dumped and unutilised at sites, thus becoming a source of major environmental hazard.

Also, while environmental issues become more intense in the coming years, they need to be tackled by changing practices

Analysis of profitability of the companies offering steel products:-

Rastriya Ispat Nigam Limited(Vizag Steel Plant),Visakhapatnam


('000 tonne)

2008-09 April-December 2009

Production (in million tonne); Capacity utilisation (%)

Hot Metal 3.55 (104%) 2.9 (113%)

Liquid Steel 3.15 (105%) 2.4 (108%)

Saleable Steel 2.70 (102%) 2.3 (114%)

Financial and Marketing performance (Rs. in crore)

Gross Turnover 10411 7543

Profit After Tax 1336 464

Net worth 12420 12884

Steel Authority Of India (SAIL),Salem.

('000 tonne)


2008-2009 2009-10 (upto December 2009)

Hot Metal 14442 10908

Crude Steel 13411 10175

Saleable Steel 12494 9366

Financial and Marketing performance (Rs. in crore)

Gross Turnover 48681 30928.82

Profit After Tax 6175 4669.47

Steel Authority of India Limited: key financials (Rs.)

Tata Steels,jharkhand.

FY2009 FY2010

Financial and Marketing performance (Rs. in crore)

Gross Turnover 102,393 147,329

Profit Before Tax 31 6743

Maharastra Elektrsmelt Ltd.: A Subsidiary of SAIL:-


Material 2008-09 2009-10 (upto December 2009)

High Carbon Ferro Manganese 68789 45322

Silico Manganese 35640 37982

Medium Carbon Ferro Manganese 1763 899

2008-09 2009(April-December)

Financial and Marketing performance (Rs. in crore)

Gross Turnover 425.06 283.65

Profit (Net) 40.88 33.03

Trends shown along the product Lines over last few years:-

On the basis of Prices

On the basis of Sales and Growth rates (+ve or -ve)

3. On the basis of Profitability

4. On the basis of Market Consumption along regions in India

On the basis of Prices:-

Long Product Prices:

Prices of all long products fell by Rs. 500 per tonne in July 2010.

While price of wire rods decreased by around Rs. 500 per tonne to around Rs. 33,000-34,000 per tonne, the prices of channels witnessed a similar fall by Rs. 500 to reach Rs. 33,000-34,000 per tonne. Prices of TMT bars also saw a marginal decline of Rs. 500 per tonne in July 2010 and fell to Rs. 33,500-34,500 per tonne.

With the prevailing monsoon season, we do not expect any improvement in the demand from the construction industry in the near term. Hence, prices of long products are expected to remain stable.

Prices of HR Coil

The decline in the HR domestic prices is also due to considerable amount of inventories in the domestic industry, which increased due to significant increase in import in the previous two months. However, with the reduction in domestic prices, imports have begun to slow down.

Prices of GP Sheets

The prices of galvanised plains decreased to Rs. 42,000-43,000 per tonne while the prices of galvanised coils also declined to Rs. 42,500-43,500 per tonne.

As the demand from the construction industry is expected to remain subdued in the ongoing monsoon season, we expect prices of galvanised sheets to remain stable in the near term.

Prices of CR Coil

CR prices have declined marginally on the back of decline in HR prices. CR prices decline magnitude was lower than that of HR prices.

The prices of CR are expected to rise marginally with expected improvement in the HR prices, while the demand from the auto industry is forecasted to be strong.

On the basis of Sales (Exports and Imports):-

Category wise export-import of steel products ('000 tonnes)




Apr-Jan FY 10

Apr-Jan FY 09

Y-0-Y (%)

Apr-Jan FY 10

Apr-Jan FY 09

Y-0-Y (%)


HR coils/sheets







Cr coils/sheets







Galvanised coils/sheets

















































Total finished steel














On the basis of Profitability:-

Profitability of the domestic industry

(Per cent)











Players with mine









Players without mine









Q1: First Quater; Q2: Second Quater; Q3:Third Quater; Q4:Fourth Quater

E:Estimated; P:Projected

On the basis of Market Consumption:-

Category-wise steel consumption ('000 tonnes)


Apr-Jan FY10

Apr-Jan FY 09

Y-0-Y (%)


HR coils/sheets




CR coils/sheets




GP/GC coils/sheets





























Total Finished steel