Hardening & Tempering of steel strips.

Hardening and Tempering is a thermal process that strengthens steel through a controlled heating and cooling process.

This process will result in improved mechanical properties and give a tougher more durable product. The hardening process involves heating the steel to above the critical temperature for the given grade and then rapidly cooling. Whilst this process achieves the highest mechanical stengths and hardness’s, steel in this condition is extremely brittle and therefore requires further treatment in the form of tempering. This consists of reheating the steel to a lower temperature and holding the steel at the given temperature for a given period of time. As with traditional annealing (used to soften steels) this process is conducted in an inert atmosphere to avoid oxidation.

The exact temperature and processing times vary with given grades of steel and the process is very specialized.

Indian steel sector’s future prospect robust: SAIL Chairman

September 9: The future prospects of the Indian steel sector remain robust, despite a not-so-encouraging situation on the global steel sector front.

However, any increase in export of steel from China to India will adversely affect the former, the chairman of Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL), C.S. Verma, told ISMW in an interview on September 9.

Verma said global capacity utilisation, which had slowly inched up to around 83% in June 2011 from a level of 73% in December 2010 came down to 79.7% in July 2011. The capacity utilisation in the regions affected by the ongoing economic crisis is likely to come down further, as they adjust their production in line with weakening demand, he added.

“As far as India is concerned, however, the picture is slightly different. Demand for steel in India, which had grown by 10.8% in FY11 was matched by 10.1% growth in production of finished steel due to capacity additions in the steel sector,” Verma said.

“Future prospects of the Indian steel sector remain robust as growth of around 9-10% per annum is expected over the next five years, based on GDP growth of 8-9%,” the chairman said.

He, however, said that geopolitical events in North Africa and the Middle East, fiscal austerity in southern Europe and the US, as well as monetary tightening in China are pulling down steel demand growth, while world crude steel production has grown by 7.6% y-o-y in H1 during calendar year 2011 as compared with world steel demand growth outlook (2011) of 5.9%.

Asked if Chinese demand for steel will taper off in the medium term, Verma said that in China, production is running at a rate which is likely to exceed 700 million tons (mt) for 2011. Beijing’s latest five-year plan includes an ambitious target to build 36 million affordable homes, he also pointed out.

“China continues to be a major influence on the world steel market. Even if Chinese demand remains strong, any surge in exports from China to India can affect our markets adversely,” the chairman added.

Source: India Steel Market Watch

Steel strip – Grade C98.

Hardness: 220HV max
Yield Strees: 290N/mm2 min
Tensile Strength: 640N/mm2 max

Thickness: 0.07 mm to 4.00 mm
Width: 8 mm to 500 mm (in thickness lower than 0.6 mm, 4 mm wide material can be supplied)
Hardness: Fully annealed material with a maximum hardness of 200 VPN & special temper material with hardness ranging from 230 VPN to 270 VPN.

This is a very special grade of steel & is mainly used for making those components where very high tensile strength & yield stress is required. It can achieve hardness of up to 58 HRC Rockwell after Hardening & Tempering. This grade is commonly used for making different kinds of Industrial knives, because due to high hardness it can give a better knife edge & thus a better cutting capacity.

Application: Mainly used for making automobile components, knives for cutting foam & plastics, doctor blades, etc.

Low alloyed steel strip.

This grade of steel can achieve a maximum hardness of 670VPN after hardening and tempering.

Chromimum is a strong carbide former and can improve and some what increase resistance to softening during tempering. This helps the component to retain its elasticity and tensile strength even at very high temperatures.

Thickness: 0.50 mm to 4.00 mm
Width: 8 mm to 350 mm
Hardness: Fully annealed(soft) material with a maximum hardness of 210 VPN.

Outlook for Indian steel producers remains stable for – Fitch – 03 Aug, 2012

Fitch Ratings said that the outlook for Fitch-rated Indian steel producers will remain stable in H212, despite the slowdown in the growth of domestic steel demand. The agency expects steel demand growth to range between 6% to 7% for the whole of 2012, with the pace of activity picking up from October after the monsoon. The proportion of stable rating outlooks in Fitch’s portfolio is 96%.

The slowdown in domestic demand growth stems from India`s unfavourable macroeconomic environment. Fitch has revised down its forecasts for real GDP growth to 6.5% and 7.0% for the financial year ending March 2013 (FY13) and FY14, respectively, from previous forecasts of 7.5% and 8.0%. Less-than-normal monsoon could also depress economic growth.

Expecting Slow Demand Growth of 2.8% YoY in 2012

Overcapacity should remain a headache for steelmakers over the next two
years. Our bottom-up approach leads us to expect 2.2% YoY growth only,
much slower than FY11’s almost 10% YoY growth.

 Except for the home appliance and machinery sectors (for which we expect
10% YoY growth in steel consumption), demand from other sectors should rise
mildly while that from the construction sector should remain flat overall. The
outlook on exports remains dim due to the lack of incentives for steelmakers
and lacklustre demand. On the other hand, we believe crude steel capacity will
continue to expand by 30m tonnes (4% YoY) to 830m tonnes in 2012,
assuming 68.66m tonnes of new capacity and 30m tonnes of capacity