What is stainless steel?
Stainless steel is a high-alloy stainless steel and is created by alloying iron and chrome. If nickel is added to the alloy, it produces chromium-nickel steel. Generally speaking, when people talk about chromium steel or stainless steel they mean chromium-nickel steel. The high chrome content results in a particularly thick and rustproof passive layer. This makes the material particularly durable and, above all, low maintenance. Stainless steel is characterised by its excellent hygienic properties, optimal temperature tolerance and its lack of sensitivity to acids and other external factors. Different alloys are used depending on the application. The most common is V2A (new designation: 1.4301). If a greater degree of protection against corrosion is required, then the alloy V4A (new designation: 1.4435) is used.
Where is stainless steel used?
The high corrosion resistance of stainless steel makes it of particular interest from an economic point of view and is now indispensable in both public and private buildings. From simple household appliances to structural elements, right through to complex industrial facilities, this stainless steel alloy is now used in extremely diverse ways and in practically every branch of industry.
Recycling stainless steel
Unlike structural steel, stainless steel is normally used in places where it can be stripped out again relatively easily (household appliances, components, sinks or tools). The cleaned steels are melted in an electric furnace and then cupellated, which means that the alloys are separated in order to achieve the highest possible level of purity. Ingots are produced at the end of the recycling process and these can then be processed into sheets, etc.
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