Bainitic Tech Invented
China established its first bainite steel company yesterday in Beijing, a move hailed by economists as set to improve the country's ability to manufacture top quality steel and steel products.
Beijing Bainite Steel Company (BBSC) is backed by China National Metals and Minerals Import and Export Corp (Minmetals), one of the country’s first 55 trade conglomerates，and the prestigious Qinghua University.
BBSC has state-of-the-art Mn-B air cooling bainitic steel technology which is unique to China and patented throughout the world.
The technology, invented by Fang Hongsheng professor of Qinghua University, has been regarded by the US Steel Company as the best type of bainitic steel in the world for its low cost and high quality.
Bainitic steel was discovered in the 1930s and is deemed superior to other kinds of steel in making grinding balls and cast steel used mainly in mines and the electric industry. It is energy- saving and causes little chemical pollution.
So far, there are three other major types of bainitic steel in the world, namely, Mo-B series, Moderate series and Non-Moderate series. They all consume too many precious elements such as molybdenum (Mo)，tungsten (W) , nickel (Ni) and chromium.
But the Mn-B type of bainitic steel does not contain Mo, W or Ni. It mainly uses man?ganese which is not a rare element.
With the technology, China has got the upper hand over other major producers like the United States which can only make low-carbon bainitic steel used for warships and cars. Now China is also able to produce medium and high-carbon bainitic steel which is used to manufacture the much-sought-after wear-resistant tools , such as grinding balls.
While bainitic steel is still rare in the world markets because of its high costs, BBSC will enable China to start mass production. The company has established three bainitic steel plants，three grinding ball plants and two bainitic cast steel plants in the country. It also boasts a cluster of factories manufacturing various springs, sophisticated die blocks, auto front axles and other machine components.
Minmetals, which has established 70 wholly-owned and joint ventures in 25 countries and regions, will serve as an effective channel for BBSC's exports.
So far, BBSC has forged links with Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the United States and Southeastern Asian countries to provide them with bainitic grinding balls and wear-resistant cast steel.
The success of the company shows how it is supporting China's effort to improve the quality of its export commodities in 1991 ?1995.