Mechanical properties of common steel

 

The physical properties of steel include: high strength, low weight, durability, ductility and corrosive resistance. Steel offers great strength, even though it is light in weight. In fact, the ratio of strength to weight for steel is the lower than any other building material. The term ductility means steel can easily be moulded to form any desired shape. 

Other physical properties of steel which are totally different are its component elements viz. iron and carbon. Steel has the ability to cool down rapidly from an extremely hot temperature after being subjected to water or oil. Physical properties depends on the percentage composition of the constituent elements and the manufacturing process. A particular amount of carbon can be dissolved in iron at a specific temperature. Unlike the constituent element iron, steel does not corrode easily after being exposed to moisture and water. The dimensional stability of steel is a desired property, as the dimension of steel remains unchanged even after many years or being subjected to extreme environmental conditions. Steel is a good conductor of electricity, i.e. electricity can pass through steel.

Steel grades are classified by many standard organizations, based on the composition and the physical properties of the metal. The deciding factor for the grade of steel is basically its chemical composition, and the supplied condition. The higher the carbon content, the harder and stronger the steel metal is. A high quality steel containing less carbon is more ductile.
Earlier forms of steel consisted of more carbon, as compared to the present day steel. Today, the steel manufacturing process is as such, that less carbon is added and the metal is cooled down immediately, so as to retain the desirable physical properties of steel. Rapid cooling (quenching) of steel also alters the grain structure. There are other types of steel such as galvanized steel and stainless steel (corrosion-resistant steel). Galvanized steel is coated with zinc to protect it from corrosion, whereas stainless steel contains about 10 percent of chromium in its composition.

 

Table with mechanical properties of common steel types
Material properties____ _______ _________ _________ _________ ________ _________ _______ _______ _______ _______ _______
    SAE1010 SAE1008 SAE1012 300WA JISGV132 DD11 S355 S235 S275 Corten_A

Tensile strength, ultimate (Mpa)

min

310

303

 

300

390

 

490

340

410

470

Tensile strength, ultimate (Mpa)

max

360

358

370

 

540

440

630

470

560

630

Tensile strength, 
Yield (Mpa)

min

180

180

 

450

 

170

355

235

275

 

Tensile strength,
Yield (Mpa)

max

240

240

310

620

270

340

 

 

 

355

Elongation at Break in (%)

min

32

42

 

 

 

 

12

17

14

 

Elongation at Break in (%)

max

48

48

19

20

25

23

22

26

22

20

Modulus of Elasticity, GPA

 

200

200

205