Did you know that in 2022 alone, the U.S. iron and steel industry had a value of $100 billion? With a number like that, it is clear that this industry is a vital component of the American economy. Moreover, as a subsector of manufacturing, the iron and steel industry is a significant player.
There are certain types of essential equipment within this subset that you should know about. Read on to learn more about three kinds of necessary equipment for the iron and steel industry.
Common Equipment in the Iron and Steel Industry
The finished products we often see iron and steel used to result from an intricate process requiring significant reshaping to fit a given job. Once these materials are formed, transporting them to the production center requires specific machinery. Complex controls, such as industrial braking systems support these mechanisms.
1. Finishing Mills
Also referred to as rolling mills, these mechanisms are responsible for shaping the steel. This process begins with reheating the steel to the point where it becomes pliable. It is then rolled so that it is thinner and longer. Finally, this finished product is shaped into plates, sheets, and beams.
Besides altering the shape of the steel, this equipment also allows an operator to change the mechanical properties. Once the material is limited to the desired state, it is soaked to cool it down and harden it.
2. Transfer Systems
Also called bundlers, these mechanisms transport a finished product out of the assembly area. Before moving the steel, these machines bind it for safe transport and material handling. Their size varies based on the goods they need to move.
3. Welding Machines
No matter how effective the milling process is, some finished products require two pieces of iron or steel to join. This is where welding machines come in.
While there are several main types of welders, they all function similarly, using an electric arc to fuse the different metals into one piece. The arc is produced by an electrical current interacting with gas.
What’s the Difference Between Steel and Iron?
The most significant difference between these two metals is that steel is an iron alloy. Iron is one of the elements listed on the periodic table. It is a transition metal with an oxidative state.
As an iron alloy, steel combines a small amount of carbon into the mix. The addition of carbon makes the metal more brittle but increases its strength.
The increased strength makes the steel more applicable, but changes are coming that can make it even more helpful. For example, new processes strengthen it, and more efficient production reduces waste.
Do You Feel More Confident With This Equipment?
Now that you know three types of equipment associated with the iron and steel industry, what are you waiting for? Besides the three mentioned above, others serve an essential function. Knowing the difference between steel and iron is also beneficial.
If you are ready for assistance with all your equipment needs, contact us to get started.