Stainless steel is a metallic alloy that contains a particular minimum amount (10.5%) of chromium. Stainless steel offers advantages over carbon steel alloys that rust when not protected from the air and its moisture content. Rust is corrosive and leads to more rust. When it forms on the exterior of carbon steel, it eventually flakes off, and in this way eats away at the steel. Stainless steel’s film of chromium oxide protects the surface from air and keeps it from corroding. Steel is used for literally hundreds of applications, from bridges to buildings to cookware, automobiles, casings and more.
Stainless steel appliances are currently in vogue in many kitchens all over America. The cabinets of appliances such as refrigerators, dishwashers, and the like are created by using sheets of steel, such as a 430 Stainless Steel Sheet. These appliances provide the kitchen with a sleek, easy to clean, industrial appearance that many domestic cooks find attractive.
Sheets of steel (like the 430 Stainless Steel Sheet) are sold in bulk by companies that work exclusively with metals, such as Toma Metals in Johnstown, PA (Tomametalsinc.com). In addition to sheets of steel, other processes include tubes and rounds, sheet coils, cut-to-length sheet coils, deburring, flatbar, and more. Other uses for steel include smaller items, such as jewelry, watch casings, weapons (guns, knives, swords), and tools. Stainless steel is also generally the preferred substance from which to make surgical and dental implements.
Stainless steel can be welded and is strong, and these two characteristics, plus the fact that it does not rust easily, have combined to make it a favorite material for use by the creators of outdoor sculptures. Some of the most beautiful sculptures in the world are made of steel, and many people do not realize just how stunning sculptures made in this medium can be until they see one. To watch such sculptures come to life beneath the hands of their creators makes for an educational experience that combines both artistry and physics.
It is difficult to imagine what the modern world today might look like were it not for the use of stainless steel. One thing is certain, without steel, earth would be a vastly different place, both in terms of appearance and also, function.
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