What's the General Principles for selection of stainless steels

What's the General Principles for selection of stainless steels

Stainless steels are defined as iron alloys with a minimum of 10.5% chromium.
Other alloying elements are added to enhance their structure and properties, but fundamentally, stainless steels are considered for selection as steels with corrosion resistant properties.

In economic terms they can compete with higher cost engineering metals and alloys based on nickel or titanium, whilst offering a range of corrosion resisting properties suitable for a wide range of applications. They have better strength than most polymer products (GRP), are readily repairable and 'recyclable' at the end of their useful life.

When considering stainless the most important features are: -

    · Corrosion (or oxidation) resistance
    · Mechanical & physical properties
    · Available forming, fabrication & joining techniques
    · Environmental & material costs (including total life cycle cost)
The basic approach is to select a grade with as low a cost as possible, but the required corrosion resistance. Other considerations such as strength and hardenability are secondary.

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