Alloying elements and scrap

More information and interesting links on the alloying elements like carbon, chromium, nickel, molybdenum, manganese, ... and scrap.

The elements

The different alloying elements in stainless steel can be combined in different proportions to create a range of grades that are suitable for almost any application.

Download as a pdf
The global life cycle of stainless steels

This leaflet summarizes the results of a study which quantifies the stocks and flows cycle of stainless steels. Conducted by Barbara Reck, Senior Research Scientist at Yale University, the study ‘Comprehensive Multilevel Cycle of Stainless Steel in 2015’ concluded that on average, 85% of stainless steels are recycled once they reach their end of life, either to become new stainless steels (56%) or a valuable iron source for carbon steels (29%).

This summary is available in English and Chinese.

Alloying elements in stainless steels and other chromium-containing alloys

This brochure summarises the characteristics of the principal alloying elements used in stainless steels and discusses their role as alloying elements. It covers Chromium, Nickel, Molybdenum, Niobium, Titanium, Manganese, Silicon and Nitrogen.

Download the brochure here

Chromium is introduced into irons, steels and many superalloys by alloying with the intermediate product, ferrochromium. This is produced by the pyrometallurgical reduction of chromite ore with carbon and/or silicon in high temperature electric arc furnaces.

Ferrochromium is essentially an alloy of iron and chromium which may intentionally contain substantial levels of carbon and silicon.

For the video on chrome by the International Chromium Development Association - click here

For more information by the Minerals Education Coalition - click here


Nickel is a naturally-occurring metallic element with a silvery-white, shiny appearance. It is the fifth-most common element on earth and occurs extensively in the earth’s crust and core. Nickel, along with iron, is also a common element in meteorites and can even be found in small quantities in plants, animals and seawater.

For more detailed information by the Nickel Institute - click here

For the video on Nickel by the Nickel Institute - click here

For more information by the Minerals Education Coalition - click here


Molybdenum is a metallic element which is most frequently used as an alloying addition in alloy and stainless steels. Its alloying versatility is unmatched because its addition enhances strength, hardenability, weldability, toughness, elevated temperature strength and corrosion resistance.

For more detailed information by the International Molybdenum Association - click here

For more information by the Minerals Education Coalition - click here

The Scrap bonus

Video and brochures explaining how the use of (stainless) steel scrap saves billions in climate and environmental costs.

Source: BDSV

Watch the video
Download the leaflet
Download the brochure

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