Evolution of Galvanized Steel

The Beginning 

The process of galvanization ages back to almost 300 years ago. The term ‘galvanization’ is related to Italian scientist Luigi Galvani, whose involvement with the process is however disputed. Today it is considered one of the important electrochemical processes in the industry. 

The existence of Zinc, an essential element for galvanization, has been interlinked as a medium that holds a strong significance dating back to the early days. Evidence has been found for galvanization to exist within something as simple as the ornaments people in the earlier days used to wear. The dipping of the metal in the liquid allowed the preservation of these ornaments instead of them getting damaged to date.

In the year 1742, a description was given on how a coating of zinc could be applied to iron by immersing it in the same. This description was given by Melouin, a chemist in a paper presented to the French Royal Academy.
Melouin’s presented facts ignited interest amongst various people in experimental science. This led to the application of molten zinc on household utensils. An affordable medium to provide protection. During the second half of the 18th century, these products started gaining recognition due to the advantages they had to offer.

In the 19th Century, the term ‘galvanization’ was coined by Sorel, a French industrialist. Initially, the term was coined to describe the accommodation of electric shocks. Prior to this, there were several metals that were tested with molten zinc. The reasons were everything but the purpose for which steel is galvanized today.

Sorel carried out an experiment where he cleaned steel and then immersed it in molten zinc. Around this very time, a man named William Crawford also carried out a similar experiment in Britain. Thus, they share the patents. Initially, this term was given to the property of the metal and not the process. This, however, changed with time.

Progressing with time 

As time passed, how was galvanization mobilized in the industries? 

 The perks of galvanizing were recognized massively in the coming years.

Britain reportedly produced a huge amount of zinc that was used for the protection of iron. Did you know that galvanized iron was used in world wars? 

In India, galvanized metal was found in the royal armors and weapons belonging to the 18th Century. Similar incidents traced the existence of galvanization. The benefits of this corrosion-resistant process are many. Along with construction, galvanization was also used in industries like agriculture, power, refineries, transport. Wherever there is a requirement for utilizing anti-corrosive metal, galvanization came into play.

Following are some of the incidents that have employed the electroplating of zinc:

  • W.H. Maze Company in Peru procured its own nails made out of zinc. This saw a humongous amount of sales during its time. The company today stands out for the processing of its own nails.
  • In 1899, DuPont Magazine reported the transition of a roofing company named Witt to shift their sales from roofing to garbage and ashcans that were galvanized as they received a patent for the same.
  • Rolls Royce introduced the Silver Shadow in 1965. A major change in its design after 50 years. The parts that were assembled for this model were all galvanized to provide greater thickness and protection. 
  • In the year 1973, galvanized wire mesh was constructed over the panels of the Sydney Opera House. This was done for extra protection and to keep the load of the panels minimum.
  • As technologies kept advancing, construction industries globally mobilized on galvanized iron and steel for production. Infrastructural industries use it majorly for pre-engineered buildings (PEBs), cable trays and other industrial elements. PEBs utilized this as a means to increase longevity. Galvanized cable trays is another example, that was used to create sturdy protection and safeguard the huge set of electric cables. 

As technologies evolved, the entire method of hot-dip galvanization changed. The process is more meticulous unlike the older method of simply providing a zinc bath.

By the 20th century, industrialists invested in utilizing galvanized steel to create structural frames for their construction. The corrosion-resistant property gained massive popularity by this time. A process manufacturing unit could not work without. Galvanization recognizes itself as one of the stages for the production of prefabricated steel. Manufacturers employ a series of procedures like cleaning, rinsing, zinc bath, and drying being the major ones. The entire process can take around 24-48 hours. 

Catering to quality with Pinax Steel

Within our journey of the past 20 years, Pinax has recognized the importance of galvanization as a requirement for many infrastructural units. Our galvanized perforated cable trays, for example, have been one of the highest-selling products. The chemical solutions Pinax uses to galvanize steel for it to be used in similar products is of high quality. Devoted towards providing the quality we assure that the products at Pinax Group are best-in-class. Committing to client satisfaction since day 1.