Special Steels – Hardox®, Strenx®, Domex® and Laser®

Sheet Metal Fabrication laser cutting sparks

Special Steels – Hardox®, Strenx®, Domex® and Laser®

Of all the materials available on Earth, none is more widely used or more recycled than steel. Whether it is stainless steel, flat carbon products, high-temperature steel, etc., a wide range of applications use the material. This is because the various alloys and forms all offer different properties that are usable in a wide range of scenarios.

Additionally, steel is known for being very strong and for having a relatively low cost associated with manufacturing it. Today, there are five sectors of steel application, which are:

  1. Transport
  2. Construction
  3. Energy
  4. Packaging
  5. Industry and Appliances

Types of steel such as stainless steel are well known; however, this article focuses on a few of the uncommon and specialized steel types. These are Hardox, Strenx, Domex, and Laser. Below is an overview of their composition and merits.

Hardox

Hardox is known for being an incredibly wear-resistant variation of steel. It is manufactured by Svenskt Stål Aktiebolag (SSAB), which is a Swedish steel corporation. The manufacturer is credited with the development of the first modern piece of wear-resistant steel, which took place in 1974.

Hardox has been given the name “wear plate,” as even when placed under heavy and large mechanical loads, the wear rate does not differ. It is highly sought after by companies that are into the quarrying of sand and gravel. This is because dump truck bodies and excavator buckets made from the material tend to last longer than those that are not.

Characteristics of Hardox include its high hardness, incredible strength, and uniformed evenness. Constructions based on the material have a highly reduced weight as its strength allows for the use of thinner metal sheets, without compromising overall integrity. Furthermore, even when placed under low temperatures, it maintains its impact resistance.

The possibility for repair is usually of great concern but this is not the case with Hardox as the sheets and plates have very good machining and welding properties. Note that it is a tempered and quenched variation of steel, which is why it has such outstanding properties. However, they can be lost if the material is worked on incorrectly. Therefore, whenever Hardox is being bent, welded, cut, or ground, there must be proper protective measures put in place, and proper precautions must be taken.

You may obtain this steel type in various grades such as 400, 450, 500, 550, etc., which all have various sheet thickness and Brinell hardness metrics.

Domex

This is the brand name of a form of hot-rolled steel produced by SSAB. It is a high-strength grade of steel, which is a low alloy, and is cold formed. Its intended uses is in the engineering and automotive industries. This means it is great for applications such as those in CNC machining. This steel type boasts low levels of both carbon and manganese, and it has precisely added grain refiners such as vanadium, titanium, and niobium. The result of this and the clean structure throughout is one of the most competitive alternatives available for both cold formed and welded products.

There is a wide range of Domex steel types available. Variations include the regular cold-forming types, to wear resistant types, to corrosion resistant types. There are even ballistic protection and electrical sheet variations available.

Not only is it high-strength, but it also has an excellent formability property, in addition to good weldability. This means that it can undergo and withstand numerous manufacturing processes including pressing, fabrication, and machining.

Domex is superior to mild steel as it offers better strength and higher quality. Therefore, projects tend to require less steel and have a lower structural weight, which can result in lower costs associated with manufacturing. If done right, cost reductions can run as high as 30%. Therefore, it is a perfect material for the automotive industry. By reducing the cost of production, the cost of the finished product (the cars in this case) can be lower for buyers. Also, car manufacturers aim for having a low structural weight, while maintaining high handling. This material is perfect for balancing such objectives.

This type of steel is available in numerous grades such as 240YP, 355MC, 600MC, etc.

Strenx

Strenx is one of the many Domex variations. In 2015, Domex 700MC was rebranded as Strenx. Like all other variations, it is thermo-mechanically rolled in modernized plants under carefully controlled heating, rolling, and cooling process.

Where it stands out is with designation D and E. This means it not only meets the demands for steel S700MC in EN-10149-2, but it also exceeds them. Due to this, it has superb strength and is the go-to material in applications such as cranes, earthmoving machines, and truck chassis. The high strength results in saving of weight and/or increasing of the payload.

Strenx is available in numerous variations such as 100, 100XF, 110XF, etc. These variations all have different dimensions, they meet different standards, and they have different optimal applications.

Laser

Laser grade steel is a high strength, cold forming steel type with an advanced structure that has been optimized for laser cutting. The design aims to achieve both speed and precision. This steel type is also manufactured by SSAB. This high-performance steel variation is efficient because of several factors, which include:

  • Consistent and optimized chemistry
  • Superior cleanliness
  • Consistent and narrow dimensional tolerances
  • Impact toughness enhancement at low temperatures
  • Tight nesting with shared cutting lines

There is total process control throughout production, which results in a dead flat material. Therefore, it meets the most challenging of needs when fast and error-free cutting is required, which results in reduced production times and less of a need to rework for better precision.

Assuming the right parameters are set, SSAB Laser ® helps you to maintain immaculate cut edge quality, even when plate thickness approaches 30 mm.

Final Remarks

SSAB makes a variety of specialized steel products including Hardox, Domex, Strenx, and Laser. They are well designed with various applications in mind. The manufacturer offers detailed overviews of all products plus online quoting to make your decision making and purchasing processes easier.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Geomiq. Examples of analysis performed within this article are only examples. They should not be utilized in real-world analytic products as they are based only on very limited and dated open source information. Assumptions made within the analysis are not reflective of the position of any Geomiq Employee.