Stainless Steel as Reinforcement Material


The selection of stainless steel as a reinforcement material for large-scale projects may sound like a costly option. But its exclusive properties and characteristics imparted to the structure make up for its cost in several ways.

Stainless steel reinforcement is preferred when the overall life cycle of the structure is of primary concern. In such cases, stainless steel turns out to be more economical than ordinary rebars in terms of longevity and durability of the structure.

This article explains all the features that make stainless steel a viable option as a reinforcement material.

1. Stainless Steel for Corrosion Resistance

Stainless steel is now one of the most used reinforcement choices to prevent corrosion in structures. The destructive forces of chlorides originating from seawater or road salts are effectively resisted by stainless steel. The resistance offered is very reliable, making it preferable for bridges and piers.

Stainless Steel Reinforcement
Image Courtesy: Anaco Trading

One affordable way to incorporate stainless steel in construction is by using it only in areas where steel or concrete is exposed to corrosive agents. And for the remaining unexposed portions, regular carbon steel bars can be used.

Other important structures where stainless steel is used are:

  • Tunnels
  • Wastewater treatment plants
  • Airport bridges and taxiways
  • Docks
  • Seawalls
  • Highway entrance and exits
  • Parking garages

2. Stainless Steel for Low Magnetic Permeability

Stainless steel possesses a lower magnetic permeability value compared to ordinary steel bars. Magnetic permeability can be defined as the material’s measure to support the formation of magnetic fields within it. Rebar with appreciable magnetic permeability can create its own magnetic field when subjected to an external magnetic field. The standard carbon steel reinforcement is an example of this. But in the case of stainless steel, the external magnetic field does not influence its magnetic field to a great extent, thus maintaining its strength and toughness.

The lower magnetic permeability value of stainless steel is hence used in the application of deperming stations. These are specific locations where the magnetic field signatures of the submarines and ship form a neutralizing treatment. Therefore, there is a need for reducing or minimizing the magnetism from the vessels and nearby elements.

The use of stainless steel to build the structures in deperming stations can help decrease the generation of magnetic fields. Even though it is expensive, engineers and contractors choose it as a necessary element within the design.

Other applications are found in the buildings that house sensitive machinery and processes whose operation may get interrupted by the magnetic fields from ferrous metals. Some of these buildings include:

  • Chemical plants
  • Laboratories
  • Hospitals
  • Medical facilities with MRI machines
  • Tool booths with electronic pass detection

3. Stainless Steel for Higher Ductility

Stainless steel shows excellent ductility properties along with corrosion resistance. It also has a higher tensile strength and fatigue resistance compared to ordinary reinforcement.

The superior ductility properties rendered by stainless steel are used in:

  • Bridges and overpasses
  • High-rise buildings
  • Earthquake-prone constructions

Stainless steel is popular for its exceptional properties irrespective of the way it is used. The stainless steel rebars show unique features both in repair works and in facilities sensitive to magnetic fields.

Stainless Steel Thread Rebars
Stainless Steel Thread Rebars

FAQs

How does stainless steel reinforcement provide resistance to corrosion?

Stainless steel is now one of the most used reinforcement choices to prevent corrosion in structures. The destructive forces of chlorides originating from seawater or road salts are effectively resisted by stainless steel. The resistance offered is very reliable, making it preferable for bridges and piers.

As the cost of stainless steel is a significant concern, it is employed only in areas where steel or concrete is exposed to a higher rate of corrosion. And for other unexposed portions, the regular carbon steel bars can be used.

Why are stainless steel rebars used for deperming actions?

Stainless steel possesses a lower magnetic permeability value compared to ordinary steel bars. Rebar with appreciable magnetic permeability can create its own magnetic field when subjected to an external magnetic field. But in the case of stainless steel, the external magnetic field does not influence its magnetic field to a great extent, thus maintaining its strength and toughness. The lower magnetic permeability value of stainless steel is hence used in the application of deperming stations.

Read More:

Stainless steel reinforcement bar- Types and Properties

How to control corrosion of steel reinforcement in concrete



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