30 January, 2023

What are some common applications of ferrous metals?


What are some common applications of ferrous metals?

India has already started paving the way to becoming a ferrous metal superpower in the next five to ten years. Standing at the forefront of that change is none other than Tata Steel and Mining. With 1.5 million tonnes of annual chrome ore production capacity, and .5 million tonnes of annual ferro chrome production capacity, tata steel mining is chugging forward as a relentless ore mining and ferrous metal giant.

Ferrous metals are essential to any country’s development. India for example has a total number of 914 steel plants. Steel production in India is now the second largest worldwide, overtaken only by Japan. 

Ferrous metals are crucial to a country’s factor production sector. The metal is used in a variety of industries, including construction, manufacturing, transport and energy. It is a key component of steel, which is used in a range of products from cars and machinery to infrastructure projects such as bridges and buildings. The main use of ferrous alloys is to make steels, which can be further divided into several categories based on their properties. The most common types of steels include cast irons, wrought irons, tool steels and alloy steels. Ferrous alloys are also used in making other products such as tools and other machinery parts.

Here are a few examples of ferrous metals and their most common uses.


1.   Low carbon steel

A steel alloy will be called ‘low carbon’ when there is less than .25 percent carbon mixed into the steel. This alloy is used to make nuts and bolts. Low carbon steel is also used in forging.


2.   Medium carbon steel 

Steel with carbon mixings of .25% to 6% is known as medium carbon steel. This alloy loses ductility and tensility over low-carbon steel, but it makes up for it in increased strength and hardness. Medium carbon steel can be tempered and quenched. They are perfect for components of the automotive industry. Gears, shafts, axles and railway components are made from Medium carbon steel.


3.   High carbon steel

High carbon steel contains .6% to 1% of carbon in steel alloy. This type of metals are known for their strength and resistance against wear and tear. High carbon steel are low on weldability, ductility, and tensility. High-carbon steel is used for making blades, springs, rail steels, wire ropes, etc.


4.   Alloy steels

Steel can alloy with other elements to make ferrous metals of all different properties. Steel can be alloyed with nickel, copper, silicon, chrome to name a few. Here are some ferrous metal alloys, and their common uses.


      Chromium ferrous alloy is also known as stainless steel. The higher the chromium levels, the more corrosion resistance it becomes.

      Silicon can be added to metal to increase its magnetic properties. Though silicon ferrous metal alloys are preferred for their elasticity property. Silicon steel alloys are used to make springs.

      If you alloy iron with carbon higher than 1.5% to 4%, you will get cast iron. Cast iron also requires silicon, manganese, phosphorous, and sulfur in the alloy mix. Cast iron has a wide range of uses from civil works to household cooking items. Cast iron is also easy to cast, and has high compressive strength yet a low melting point, making them really versatile. 


Final Words

There are many more applications of ferrous metals. It soon becomes clear that the growth of the iron mining industry is integral to the growth of India. Not only iron, but India is also coming up as the number one chrome ore supplier thanks to Tata Steel and Mining

Overall, ferrous metals with all alloy combinations are important to some industries or other. When you take into account the research that is still going on in the ferrous metal industry, it is possible to believe that we could come up with better and newer uses for ferrous metals.