Stainless Steel - 100 Not Out!
As 2013 commemorates 100 years since stainless steel was discovered by Harry Brearley in Sheffield, the BSSA is celebrating the centenary of this discovery that has changed the world we live in. We have selected 50 applications to run throughout 2013 demonstrating how this material has influenced our lives so far; leaving us unable to imagine a world without stainless steel.
In addition, the BSSA is collaborating with the SMEA to organise a major conference and exhibition in Sheffield from the 11th - 13th June 2013. Click here for more details about this event.
This is the list of emails that have been sent so far. Click on each link to open the email in a new browser window.
The Thames Gateway Water Treatment Works opened in 2010 as the UK's first water desalination plant. The £270 million investment is capable of supplying fresh drinking water during extended periods of low rainfall. A key part of the process involves saline water passing through large filters which are supported by 78 stainless steel I-beams.
Imagine a world without stainless steel... what we take for granted today was only discovered 100 years ago. In fact the discovery that changed the world was an accident – Harry Brearley, at Firth Brown's laboratory in Sheffield, was testing different steel alloys to try to improve the rifling in gun barrels and noticed that one cast did not corrode.
London is potentially vulnerable to flooding due to the rising high-water level and the risk of a surge tide during a severe storm. In order to protect the city, a flood barrier was built.
An early example of stainless steel in architecture can be seen in the Savoy, Britain’s first luxury hotel in London opening its doors on the 6th of August 1889. The Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff opened in 2004 and is a more modern example of how this material can be used.
Bricks and mortar aren't the only things keeping a roof over our heads… Wall Ties are essential to the stability of our homes and other masonry buildings. They are built into the walls during construction, tying the slender internal and external leaves together to give the masonry its strength.
Stainless steels are ideal materials for manufacturing pressurised cylinders for heating and storing water for use in the home. These modern systems are designed to deliver plentiful hot water to several outlet points simultaneously.
They both use stainless rebar! Rebar is a rod or bar commonly used for reinforcement in concrete. To ensure long life spans, stainless rebar has been used successfully in a variety of highly demanding structures.
Stainless Steel has long been used where food is being prepared as the kitchens on the Queen Mary, launched in 1934, demonstrate. Importantly, its corrosion resistance means it is perfectly neutral to foodstuffs so the taste and appearance of foods remain unchanged.
The last great public project in London of the 20th century; the Jubilee Line Extension was completed just in time for the millennium at a cost of £3.2 billion. The 16km extension was the result of half a century of strategic transport planning where stainless steel can be seen to play a vital role.
The Armada Platform is operated by BG Group and exploits three gas and condensate fields in the Central North Sea. In 2009, new accommodation modules were added to accommodate 59 personnel; the cladding of these modules was corrugated stainless steel.
More than 30% of all stainless steel produced goes into products related to the food and beverage sector. The first stainless steel fermenting vessel was used to brew beer in 1928 and is still the material used in breweries today.
Today, environmental issues such as recyclability are important criteria for material selection. Stainless steel objects should never become waste as they contain valuable raw materials such as chromium, nickel and molybdenum which make recycling stainless steel a valuable and worthwhile process.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is one of the most advanced medical imaging modalities in the world. At the heart of every system is a powerful magnet, which depends heavily on the stainless steel used in its construction.
The catalytic converter transforms harmful pollutants into less harmful emissions before leaving a vehicle's exhaust system. Catalytic converter shells are made from stainless steel due to its excellent thermal fatigue properties.
The single most important piece for weightlifting is the weightlifting bar. Stainless steel is often used, especially for higher quality bars in competitions where they are checked for their durability, bending resistance, and flexibility under heavy loading.
Tunnels need to function relatively maintenance-free for many decades. Stainless steel requires no added protection for corrosion resistance and its high strength and fire resistance provide a long and durable service life. Stainless steel is used in both visible applications, such as fire doors and barriers, and invisible applications such as reinforcing.
In 1956 the first stainless steel razor blades to be used in England were introduced by Wilkinson Sword, revolutionising the shaving products industry. Previously, carbon steel had been used to make the blades but this tended to rust easily and lasted only a short time in the humid environment of the bathroom.
The modern dairy industry relies upon stainless steel to efficiently meet the needs of its customers around the world. Dairy products contain significant amounts of protein and many of the micronutrients we need for a healthy and balanced diet.
Each year in Britain about 85,000 operations are performed to insert a metal tubular device called a stent. The most widely used material for stents is a high purity 316L grade (1.4404) of stainless steel.
With a little help from stainless steel spades, rakes, and shears! Stainless steel is the blossoming choice for garden tools because it is resistant to rust, long lasting and incredibly durable for those weeds that are a bit tough to dig out.
Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay became the first people to conquer the 8,848 metre high Mount Everest on May 29th 1953. The pair were helped by containers of oxygen which were crafted in stainless steel.
Grade 430 (1.4016) stainless steel is the standard material used for the washing machine drum. Its formability and corrosion resistance make it the ideal material to keep our clothes clean and spinning for longer.
Built completely from stainless steel, a unique £1.8 million, 200ft bridge links Bristol's Temple Quay harbour with the city centre. The bridge was part of a £200 million regeneration scheme in Bristol.
In the early 1900s the wristwatch, originally called a wristlet, was typically only worn by women and was considered a passing fashion rather than a serious timepiece. The vast majority of us own a watch and the chances are that the watch back is made from stainless steel, and in many cases, the face of the watch and the strap are too.
Stainless steel sculptures last decades, making this the perfect material for creating a lasting memory. A wide variety of surface finishes are available, which give stainless its stunning appearance.
By 1932 the first stainless steel railway carriages were put into service by the Budd Company. Stainless steel soon became a standard material for rail applications in the United States and Japan, a trend that has continued to the present day.
Road studs are now being replaced by solar versions to provide better lighting, thereby making roads safer and said to reduce casualties by 70%. The top covers for these road studs are made from marine grade stainless steel.
Corrosion resistance, durability and reduced maintenance costs are some of the reasons why stainless steel is used for architectural cladding. With the increasing emphasis being placed on sustainable building design, stainless steel is fully recyclable and contributes towards the longevity and reduced energy consumption of a building.
The airbag specified for use in vehicles traces its origins back as early as 1941. Dual front airbags are now an integral part of road safety and are mandatory in all cars from the 1998 model year onwards.
E = mc2 is perhaps the most famous equation proposed by arguably the most famous scientist – Albert Einstein. The destruction of a small amount of mass m gives rise to a huge amount of energy E because c, the speed of light is very large and even larger when you square it.
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