100 years ago Stainless Steel was discovered, and today, it's become popular worldwide. It is used in an almost endless number of application and industries. More than 30% of about 38 million tons world annually produced is utilized in the Food Industry alone.
“Stainless Steel” or “Inox Steel” (French: inoxydable – rust proved) is an iron-containing alloy that contains at least 10.5% of chromium. It is a large family of about 100 grades of stainless steels. The most popular Stainless Steel which is widely used is the 300 series stainless steel (304 and 316).
The most important properties of stainless steel in the Food Industry are:
- corrosion resistance,
- easy to clean,
- food flavor protection and
- hygienic design.
The properties of the Stainless Steel depend on the chemical composition. Higher levels of chromium and the addition of other alloying elements such as molybdenum and nickel enhance this protective barrier and further improve the corrosion resistance of the stainless steel.
Generally speaking, the 316 stainless steel grades are MORE corrosion resistance than 304 grades.
Chemical Composition of 300 Series Stainless Steels
|304||18.0 - 20.0||8.0 - 10.5|
|316||16.0 - 18.0||10.0 - 14.0||2.0 - 3.0|