page 5
The big picture
Properties of steels
Metals are so useful because they usually have some or all of the properties shown below:

  1. Good conductor of heat
  2. Good electrical conductor
  3. Shiny
  4. Strong
  5. Ductile
  6. Malleable
  7. High melting point
  8. Dense

A steel can have almost any combination of these properties. For example, if it is used to make the cables supporting a suspension bridge, a steel must be ductile, strong in tension and have good corrosion resistance.

Any batch of steel is manufactured according to the customer’s requirement or specification. This specification will produce a steel with the properties that will do the job for which it is required.

Question 4.

The table shows some uses of different steels. In each case, the steel will need particular properties. Click on the buttons to show which properties each steel should have. The numbers refer to the list at the top of this page.
A radiator in a central heating system
A filament in a light bulb
A saucepan
A manhole cover
The blade of a knife