This wiki about steel should give you a brief overview of the steelmaking process. Steelmaking starts with the production of pig-iron from raw iron ore in a blast furnace. The pig iron then goes through further processing to finally become steel. In this wiki we will introduce steel products and some of the great properties of the material. Additionally we will look at the history of steelmaking and some basics of alloying and post processing.

Iron ore

As a very versatile material there are many utilizations for iron and nonferrous metals. At first we will present iron products; later however we will also introduce some uses for nonferrous metals such as aluminum.

To understand the process of steelmaking you need to be aware of some basic properties of steel. Steel primarily consists of iron which is combined with other elements called alloys to give it its unique properties. Using alloys it is possible to determine many characteristics of the final product already during the production process. This allows steel grades which fulfill very specific demands and justifies the label high tech material.

Iron ore becomes steel

To produce steel we need pig-iron which is generated in the blast furnace. The blast furnace is continuously supplied with layers of coke, iron ore and flux (for example limestone as a slag former). To keep the chemical reduction process running, air is blown into the lower section of the furnace. This process is called smelting and produces pig iron; however pig-iron still contains too much carbon to be useful.

Steelmaking is the process of removing the carbon from pig iron by refining it with oxygen. To produce the final alloy some additional elements may be added or removed. Using continuous casting the finished alloy becomes the wrought material that many industries use for their products.

Steel offers many applications

Steel slab in the rolling mill

The wrought material sold by steel mills can subsequently be processed, for example to form thin sheets which offer additional often standardized applications. There are many other ways to manufacture a finished product.

Steel can be bought in a variety of different grades such as construction steel or stainless steel. Even more exotic variations are often used for example specialized tool steel. Usually there is a differentiation between thick plates and thin sheets at a thickness of 3 mm. Thin sheets are typically delivered as coils. On our products & services page you can find more information about the steel products we offer. Our stock program ranges from thin sheets to thick plates in construction steel, stainless steel and many other grades. We also offer stainless steel machining for your parts.