Steel plays a vital role in every industry and provides endless benefits to each sector. People when hear the term steel, think it is used only in the construction sector. But in reality, it is used in every industry because of its high tensile strength and stability. Hence, the demand for steel dealers increases more in the future. One such application of steel where it is limitless is the nuclear sector. Experts say that by the end of 2031, there will be an increase in nuclear energy production from 6,780 MW to 22,480 MW. They also said that they would concentrate on natural energy sectors like hydrogen and biofuels. Hence, the nuclear industry will reach new heights in the coming years, and there is an expectation that there will be an increase in steel manufactures. Therefore, in this post, listed below are some uses of steel in nuclear production.
Steel in reactors:
The prime application of steel is, it is used in every part of the reactor. To make the parts of the nuclear plant and carry out the process with safety, people use stainless steel and its alloys. The inner pipes and process-related reservoirs are made of austenitic stainless steel, and most of the French nuclear plants use austenitic stainless steel of grade 304L and 316L. They use 304L steel for its process and 316L for storage. If any plant uses highly corrosive materials for the reaction, they add alloys with the steel to increase its thickness. Ferrites cause cracking in the reservoirs, and hence, adding 3% of the ferrite in the steel container will prevent cracking.
Another prime benefit of using steel in the nuclear sector is, they are resistant to high temperatures in the generators. Austenitic steel is an excellent option to work in extreme temperatures. A typical reactor uses stainless steel because they are resistant to corrosion. Austenitic steel operates even at 1000 degrees celsius and has high corrosion resistance compared to ferritic steel. Hence, steel developers created ferritic-martensitic stainless steels for the reactors with promising characters. Similarly, thermal and hydel power plants use SAIL TMT bar in their process.
The nuclear sector uses numerous pipes and tubes around the reactors. Pressure tubes in the reactor are used to circulate the coolant. These tubes are made of stainless steel and a safer option to function the process. They protect the reactor from physical factors and prevent excess radiation.
Hence, steel finds its application starting from MS chequered plate in the construction industry to austenitic steel in nuclear sectors. Therefore, steel plays a critical role in every field, especially in the nuclear industry.