What’s High Strength Low Alloy Steel (HSLA)?
High strength low alloy steel (HSLA) is a range of steels which are engineered specifically for performance rather than for any specific chemical content. Small alloying elements such as Titanium, Columbium and Vanadium are introduced at the production stage to provide added strengthening to the material.
HSLA steels are popular due to increased market demand for high yield steel products. Any steel with good forming qualities and high impact strength characteristics will ultimately provide a low-cost option in the long-term as the steel will last, even under heavy load bearing and heavy wear environments.
Examples of HSLA steels:
Abrasion Resistant Steel
Used throughout the mining and earth moving industry, abrasion resistant steel is engineered specifically to last. The material is martensitic and displays excellent hardness characteristics which makes it resistant to the effects of heavy wear and increases in surface pressure. The material can provide an impressive yield strength of up to 1250 MPa (Mega Pascal’s) which is dependent on thickness.
Displaying excellent yield and tensile strength, armour steel plate is in essence a ballistic resistant steel designed to protect against airborne projectile armaments and explosive devices. The steel is quenched hardenable and is ideal for use in the construction of security and military vehicles.
High Yield Steel
A range of super strong steels which can offer a minimum yield strength of up to 1300 MPa, high yield steels are used in heavy transporters and lifting equipment. The steel can be used effectively to reduce build costs as less material can be used without the need to compromise on quality and performance.
Products like Cor-ten are structural weather resistant steels which are a copper chromium alloy designed to be used in load bearing applications. The appeal of this still is that is self protects by forming its own protective layer of rust (patina) which is self replenishing. The material requires no treatment unless submerged in water for any length of time.
HSLA steels offer buyers the opportunity to review construction projects which may well have been ‘over engineeered’ and specify a higher strength material which can perform exactly the same job but in a smaller thickness. Ultimately, this can save considerable cost when compared to thicker and less performing material.
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