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Steel - FAQs

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What is Steel made of?

Steel is an alloy of iron and carbon containing less than 2% carbon and 1% manganese, as well as small amounts of oxygen, phosphorus, silicon, sulphur, and other elements.

The iron used to in the steel manufacturing process is made by removing oxygen and impurities from iron ore. With wide-ranging applications, steel is one of the most important metals in the world.

Is Steel a metal or an alloy?

Although steel often is referred to as a metal, it’s an alloy, and not a pure metal. An alloy is a mixture of chemical elements, at least one of which is a metal.

Steel is a mixture of iron (a metal), carbon (a non-metal), and other non-metal elements.

How is Steel made?

The steel manufacturing process begins with the mining of iron ore, a naturally occurring compound of iron, oxygen, and other elements, and coal, which is used to produce coke. The raw materials are transformed into steel using the blast furnace/basic oxygen furnace process and the electric arc furnace process.

During these processes, oxygen and various impurities are removed from the iron, which is combined with the carbon made from the coke to produce steel.

Does Steel rust?

Yes, steel does rust. When exposed to oxygen for a long time, the iron molecules in the steel react with oxygen to form iron oxide on the surface of the steel.
Iron oxide is a compound better known as rust.

What is Steel used for?

Steel is one of the most versatile alloys, and it is used in a massive variety of industries. Due to the versatility, low cost, and high tensile strength of steel, it is used in construction and manufacturing.

Some of steel’s uses include bicycles, buildings, cars, electrical appliances, furniture, infrastructure, jewellery and accessories, machines, medical equipment, ships, tools, trains, and weapons.

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