In a developing country like the Philippines, there are hundreds of jobs that are created as the country’s economy continues to perform well in the World Market. Construction and manufacturing companies continue to incur new projects as the country comes into terms with the changes happening within the government as well as outside of the Nation. The boom of the Industrial Revolution allowed for the mass production of steel and metal parts. While it’s true that a large percentage of the carbon emissions found in the Earth’s atmosphere were due to the increase in man-made and dispersed carbon emissions during this time, steel remains to be one of the most important and environmentally friendly materials that the world needs today. As we turn our attention to the rising demand for steel and construction in the country, let’s have a look at the properties of the versatile material that is steel.
Steel is an alloy made of iron and carbon. It can come in numerous forms, such as deformed bars, steel plates, or even pipes. For thousands of years, steel has been used as material for the production of other materials. The steel alloy was used in household tools such as cutlery and cooking materials. Steel was also used to make weaponry in order to defend the tribe or group from hostile threats.
Did you know that steel is 100% recyclable? The world has manufactured more than enough steel that there is hardly any need for new steel to be made. This is because while there are many infrastructures that cannot be separated from the steel found within, there is still a large amount of unused steel lying about. Steel can be melted down and refined in order to make it into new steel. Obsolete cars, jeepneys that are beyond use, old support beams from renovated land can be melted down and recycled into new steel with new grades.
There are over 3000 different grades of steel found in the world, and they all have different physical, chemical, and environmental properties. While the basic composition of steel remains to be an alloy of carbon and iron, steel grades are dependent on the additional elements found in the alloy. Elements such as manganese, phosphorus, and sulfur can be found in differing grades of steel, all with differing amounts and properties.
There are various grading systems that can be used in order to distinguish steel based on their properties. The Americal Iron and Steel Institute, for example, categorize steel into four groups based on their chemical composition namely carbon steels, alloy steels, stainless steels, and tool steels. Carbon steels are the most common type of steel, making for about 90% of total steel production. Alloy steels, on the other hand, contain alloying elements in varying proportions that make up another spectrum of differing grades like manganese, silicon, nickel, titanium, copper, chromium, and aluminum.
The main alloying element of stainless steel is chromium, making about 10 to 20% of the element in the alloy in proportion to its high resistance. The higher the amount of chromium is found in the steel alloy, the more resistant to corrosion it is than mild steel. The last general grade of steel are tool steels. These types of steel contai tungsten, molybdenum, cobalt, and vanadium in again varying degrees in order to increase its resistance to heat and increase in durability used in cutting and drilling equipment.
The Philippines is a country on the brink of a great change. Obsolete cars that have been around for more than 20 years, jeepneys that are in need of replacement, or spare parts found in junkyards around the country can be made into new material if given the chance. The Philippines has amassed a lot of spare parts and should be reused in order to contribute to the development of the country.