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Nowadays, the desire for sustainable development and building green is in the rise.

Sustainable development is the social, economic, and environmental commitment to growth and development that meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs.

Steel tube ready to be galvanized

Steel tube ready to be galvanized (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Galvanized metal is simply steel in some form that has received a thin coating of zinc oxide.

The purpose of the zinc is to protect the steel from elements that normally would lead to oxidation, corrosion and the eventual weakening of the steel. In this sense, the zinc coating acts as what is called a sacrificial anode.

Zinc will protect the steel from corrosion by acting as a barrier between the steel and the corrosive agent; at least until the zinc coating has been completely oxidized.

Galvanized steel products are the most widely used in construction material worldwide.

Galvanized metal can be made into supports, girders and even into sheets of metal that can be used in all sorts of construction and building projects.

The zinc coating protects against corrosion and is useful in the long term structural performance as they resist humidity and water as well.

They are also ideal for the manufacturing of body/structure of automobiles and airplanes.

In the manufacturing process galvanized pipes can be easily shape, cut and moulded.

They are also lighter in weight compared to other building materials that decrease the foundation load.

As use in framing, galvanized steel experiences no shrinking, warping, twisting or deforming like wood framing.

The framing pieces are uniform and square, allowing for ideal finishing work.

The steel framed homes can stand up to hurricanes, earthquakes, winds, snow loads, torrential rains and termites without corrosion or breakage.

There are no nail pops or squeaking with steel framing, since there are no nails used.

The studs install quickly, weigh less than wood, and are less wasteful, and can be made to custom lengths, eliminating the need to cut frequently.

The best about galvanized steel products are their costing when we compare them with other materials in a long term correspondence.

Galvanized metal is often used in the construction of warships, such as carriers and submarines.

The water and salt repellent qualities of the galvanized steel with its solid zinc coating make it the ideal material to use for hulls.

When combined with customized paint formulas that are meant to be used with galvanized metal, the end result is a hull that will hold up to a lot of wear and tear.

Galvanization has also allowed the use of steel for building structures that will remain strong for many decades.

The common process for galvanizing is hot-dip galvanizing and it can contribute positively to sustainable development initiatives because of its longevity in corrosion protection, 100% recyclability, and minimal environmental impact.

The hot dip galvanizing process was developed in the 18th Century.

It was found that molten zinc would react with steel to form a metallurgical bonded protective coating that had superior durability to any other coatings for atmospheric exposure.

While all early hot dip galvanized items were manufactured by dipping them in batches in a molten zinc bath, different technologies have been developed to more efficiently apply zinc-based coatings to continuously manufactured products such as wire, sheet and tube.

The hot-dip galvanized coating is comprised of over 98% zinc metal.

Zinc is a naturally occurring element commonly found in all living organisms, and is essential to life. Zinc, like steel, is 100% recyclable without the loss of any properties.

Additionally, because galvanizing provides maintenance-free corrosion protection for 50 plus years, it does not require additional energy, materials, or environmental impact expended to constantly maintain the coating.

Hot-dip galvanized steel has a low environmental cost. It requires no maintenance during the practical service life of most structures.

Additionally, hot-dip galvanized steel is the most recycled material in the world with approximately 90% of steel and 80% of all available zinc recycled.

The energy required to produce the recycled product is 30% less than required to produce new hot-dip galvanized steel.

While the cost of galvanizing may be up to 50% of the cost of the steel, the cost of galvanized reinforcement as a percentage of total building cost is much lower than generally realised.

It can be as little as 0.5%, depending on the nature of the structure. For most structures, even in the most aggressive environments, the use of galvanized reinforcement can be confined to the exposed surfaces and critical structural elements such as

Surface exposed beams and column, window and door surrounds, prefabricated units, architectural features and external facades of buildings near the sea coast .

Source : Galvanizers Association of Australia, Galvanize It, Industrial Galvanizers and Galvanizers Association Sustainability

(this article written for 1BINA.my)