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  • Peter Gregory Mositun

WHAT IS STRUCTURAL STEEL


Steel is well known for providing structure and strength unlike any other when it comes to construction. The durability and potency that steel provides is not matched by the likes of wood or concrete.



More often than not, it is the case that steel is the material of choice for construction, and people prefer steel due to its various advantages.



Steel buildings tend to be built using various frames too, for example clear span, modular and single slope. Due to the fact that steel is much easier and less time-consuming when it comes to building, along with its numerous other factors that have proved advantageous, steel, these days, has become the most sought-after way of constructing buildings.



With steel, we can create structures like no other material when it comes to construction. No other material has the potency and durability that steel does. Structural steel has undoubtedly become the preferred choice for construction due to the various benefits it has.



The buildings that are made from steel require various structural frames. Also, constructing with steel entails much less time which makes it the most sought-after way of constructing structures.


Structural steel refers to a category of steel construction material that is produced with a particular cross section or shape, and some specified values of strength and chemical composition.



Structural steel composition, strength, size, shape, strength, and storage are controlled in most advanced countries.


Structural steels are manufactured in section and plate shapes and are normally used in bridges, buildings, ships, and pipelines.


TYPES OF STRUCTURAL STEEL

After iron, carbon is the most important element in steel. The increase of carbon produces materials with high strength and low ductility.



The techniques used for the production of steel are high-computerized stress analysis, precision stress analysis, and innovative jointing.


Structural steel shapes are made out of steel, which is formatted from a precise cross section. Yet, at the same time it follows definite standards for mechanical properties and chemical composition.



Structural steel comes in various shapes like L-beam, Z shape, HSS shape, L shape (angle), structural channel (C-beam, cross section), T shaped, rail profile, bar, rod, plate, and an open joist of web steel.


Structural steel can also be categorized according to the categories of chemical composition:


CARBON-MANGANESE STEELS:



The major chemical ingredients are iron, carbon, and manganese. These are normally called mild structural steels or carbon steels. The strength and ductility are high and being economical is therefore widely used.


HIGH-STRENGTH, LOW-ALLOY STEELS or micro-alloyed steels are designed to provide better mechanical properties and/or greater resistance to atmospheric corrosion than conventional carbon steels. This is a recent development in the steel industry. Chemical elements are added to improve the strength.



They are used in cars, trucks, cranes, bridges, roller coasters and other structures that are designed to handle large amounts of stress or need a good strength-to-weight ratio.


HIGH STRENGTH TEMPERED AND QUENCHED ALLOY STEELS are used for structural purposes. During these processes, the steel changes its internal structure what results in different properties.



The most important one is the hardness. Quenching and tempering make the steel stronger and resistant to mechanical failure.



Another important feature that these processes determine is plasticity. Because of it, engineering steel can be formed in any shape. It is crucial when it comes to the production of tools and parts. Further processing of the quenched and tempered alloy steels allows achieving various visual effects - from shine to matte.


Examples of applications where quench and tempered plate steel is ideal:

‐ Storage tanks

‐ Bridges and high-rise buildings

‐ Excavator and loader buckets

‐ Deflector plates

‐ Gear wheels

‐ Cutting edges

‐ Earthmoving buckets

‐ Dump truck wear liners

‐ Chutes

‐ Low Loader Trailers



FIREPROOFING OF STRUCTURAL STEEL



Structural steel is fire-resistant in itself, but fire protection methods should be put in place in case there is a possibility of it getting heated up to a point where it starts to lose its durability and strength.



Fire-resistance rating is determined by the time taken for the steel that is being tested to attain the temperature fixed by the standard.


Structural steel needs external insulation that is also called fireproofing, to prevent the deterioration of steel in the occurrence of a fire.


On heating, the steel expands and becomes softer, and finally the structural integrity is lost. If sufficient energy is provided, steel may also melt.


The transfer rate of heat to steel can be reduced by using fireproofing materials.



Corrosion has to be prevented when it comes to structural steel, but tall buildings are known to have withstood various kinds of adversities when built using structural steel.


Steel construction is increasing in popularity all over the world, with every region benefitting from steel throughout the years.



Many of the best architectural wonders have been constructed through the use of steel, be it structural, carbon or rebar, including The Empire State Building and the Sydney Harbour Bridge.



Structural steel is versatile, strong, and durable, so it is hardly surprising that it can be morphed into almost any shape based on the construction project at hand; it can be constructed almost immediately the moment it is received on the building site.


More importantly, the usage of steel is beneficial in terms of eco friendliness than other modes of construction, and due to this factor alone, it is given more preference.


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