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January 16, 2020

Types of Steel Used in Shipbuilding

Shipbuilding is one of the world’s oldest forms of production, with some of the earliest forms of seafaring vessels being built thousands of years ago. Over many years, numerous innovations and developments have not only made ships faster and more durable but also much larger in size — from the classic wooden ship designs of the past centuries to vessels made out of shipbuilding steel.

Today’s current generation of vessels has the ability to traverse waters at a much faster pace while having larger cargo and passenger capacities overall. This has also given birth to one of the biggest industries in the world, with shipbuilding companies gaining huge amounts of revenue after every successful launch of each vessel. While the development of vehicles such as cars and aircraft has made traveling more convenient than ever, ships remain as one of the most effective ways to travel or make deliveries across vast distances.


What are the types of steel used for shipbuilding?

With ships becoming larger as years go by, the demand for stronger materials has also increased. This led to the development of shipbuilding steel, which is a material that provides the best qualities of steel plates while being durable enough to withstand the rough and salty seas. Like steel for different kinds of industries, shipbuilding steel is manufactured to meet the standards of seafaring.

This means that it must have the proper thickness for each section of the vessel, while also having the strength to withstand strong waves and currents. Along with being highly durable, shipbuilding steel is also very flexible, allowing shipbuilders to create different types of curves and angles to ensure the best performance for each vessel. With steel becoming an integral material in the shipbuilding industry, here are some of the most common types of shipbuilding steel used within the industry.




When it comes to shipbuilding steel, one of the most important qualities is the thickness of each steel plate. Ships constantly face rough seas, which means that strong currents and waves are present during each journey. Now having the right thickness can cause a ship to have holes and cracks, which can cause the whole vessel to capsize. This can cause a lot of harm to the crew and passengers on board, along with damaging important cargo and equipment in the process.

To prevent these scenarios from happening, the development of stronger shipbuilding steel persisted, which lead to the introduction of steel like the AH36. Being one of the most common types of shipbuilding steel, AH36 is known for its durability, having a very high tensile strength and yield strength compared to standard types of steel used in other industries. When it comes to thickness, AH36 can reach up to 220 mm in thickness that can provide a strong surface for a lot of seafaring vessels.



Other than having the strength to withstand the rigors of sea travel, shipbuilding steel is also designed to withstand different levels of temperature. As a result, the EH36 was developed, which is a type of shipbuilding steel known for being able to withstand extreme temperatures. Ships are designed to withstand a wide range of temperatures, as they tend to travel across both tropical and cold areas on a regular basis. The temperature causes the metal to expand and contract, which can cause more wear and tear on regular steel.

Using EH36 steel will ensure ships would be able to handle these changing temperatures during each journey. This temperature resistance also makes it easier to weld these steel plates together, which helps improve the efficiency of constructing the ship’s hulls and main structure.



Aerial View Container Ship Carrying Container In Import Export B

Another heavy-duty type of shipbuilding steel used for large sections of the ship, the DH36 steel plate provides great steel quality and high durability. Being another type of steel used for ship hulls and main structures, the DH36 steel plat can be used for refitting purposes, which is a standard process when it comes to improving various sections of a ship’s structure. This type of shipbuilding steel is common in vessels such as luxury cruise ships and large container ships.


Key Takeaway

Shipbuilding is one of the oldest industries in the world, and the use of steel has only helped create better vessels as time goes by. By using these types of shipbuilding steel, the industry would be able to create a wide variety of vessels that offer superior strength and performance.

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