Durable, strong and relatively inexpensive, steel is an essential metal of our modern society. It is made from iron ore, a resource plentiful in the earth's crust.
In its natural form, iron ore is not a useful metal, but for many years humans have been experimenting with how to transform it into practical materials such as wrought iron, cast iron and steel.
Other Raw Materials
Steel is an alloy of iron ore and carbon. Other elements, such as chromium, phosphorus and manganese, may also be included, depending on the type of steel desired.
For steel to be created, iron ore must be heated at high temperatures until molten iron is produced. Other heating elements can be used in steel-making furnaces. The addition of oxygen helps speed the transformation of iron ore into steel.
Molten steel is poured into various types of molds to create whatever shapes are needed. Sometimes intermediary shapes are created, and then the steel is formed again to create the final desired shape.
Once the steel pieces are shaped, their surfaces must be finished. The finishing process helps prevent corrosion.
- Photo Credit Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Jennifer Dickert
About Toothpaste Tubes Made of Metal
The first toothpaste tubes, appearing on the scene in the 1890s, originally were made entirely of metal. In the 1940s, because of...
Alloy Vs. Non-Alloy Steel
Steel is generally referred to as "carbon" steel, because it is a combination of iron atoms interspersed with carbon atoms. The overall...
What Is Galvanized Steel Made Of?
Galvanized steel is made by coating the steel in zinc to better resist corrosion. There are three methods of producing galvanized steel....
The Ingredients in Stainless Steel Magic
Stainless Steel Magic is a metal cleaner and polish for household use. According to its manufacturer, Magic American, Inc., it is effective...
What Tools Do I Need to Make Knives?
While no one knows for sure the history of the first knife, scientists have found evidence of handmade knives from as far...
How to Make Steel
Steel is usually made up of 96 percent to 98 percent iron, and the rest is mainly carbon, but these elements need...