Steel fabrication is termed as the process wherein raw materials are transformed into a final product. Stainless steel is well-known for its corrosion resistance and heat resistance. Stainless steel fabrication differs from carbon steel fabrication due to the amount of chromium present during fabrication. Steel fabrication products are used in the manufacture of a wide range of household products to large machinery parts used in aviation and automobile industries.
The steel fabrication market can be segmented based on type and end-use industry. Austenitic stainless steel, super-austenitic stainless steel, ferritic stainless steel, martensitic stainless steel, and duplex stainless steel are the different types of stainless steel. The different types of stainless steel fabrication market are classified based upon their crystalline structure. Austenitic stainless steel products are widely used as compared to other stainless steel. It comprises austenitic crystalline structure, which exhibits a face-centered cubic crystalline structure. Super-austenitic stainless steel contains high amount of molybdenum, nitrogen additions, and nickel. It reduces the sensitization effect caused by high temperatures. Ferritic stainless steel contains lower amount of chromium and nickel. It is usually less expensive as compared to other types of stainless steel. Martensitic stainless steel is magnetic, extremely strong, tough, and machinable compared to other types of stainless steel. Duplex stainless steel has mixed composition of ferritic stainless steel and austenitic stainless steel. Other stainless steels includes precipitation-martensitic stainless steel and varieties of duplex grades stainless steel.
Based on end-use industry, the steel fabrication market can be segregated into energy, architecture, infrastructure, locomotion, healthcare, jewelry, and others. The energy segment includes oil & gas, wind energy, solar energy, electricity turbines, and transmission towers employs fabricated stainless steel on a large scale. Stainless steel is used for practical and esthetic purposes of architecture in constructing monuments, bridges, and sculptures. It is widely used in developing and refurbishing infrastructure plans. Stainless steel is used in transportation purpose for construction of roadways, developing railways, and constructing airplane parts. Steel fabrication is used in the making of surgical tools and medical equipment in the healthcare sector. Stainless steel is also used in making watches and jewelry.
Anti-corrosion and heat resistance properties are some of the major factors driving the steel fabrication market. Stainless steel does not corrode or rust upon contact with water. It requires low maintenance cost. This has influenced its usage in commercial kitchens and food processing plants.
Inability to withstand low electric conductivity as compared to copper is one of the restraints of the steel fabrication market. Other metals such as lead and iron cause galvanic corrosion upon contact with stainless steel in damp or moist environment.
In terms of geography, North America dominates the steel fabrication market due to its development plans to refurbish its infrastructure. Demand for steel fabrication is high in countries such as France, Germany, and the U.K. in Europe due to increase in industrial activities. Countries such as China, India, and Japan in Asia Pacific are emerging markets for steel fabrication due to rapid industrialization and development of smart cities. After the economic slowdown, countries in Latin America such as Brazil and Mexico are beginning to invest in steel fabrication. This is expected to boost the market in the near future.
Key players operating in the steel fabrication market include Global Fabricators, Global Engineering, Fabtech Group, Xiamen Wenzhong Stainless Steel Product Co, and Shanghai Canhu Industry Co., Ltd.