Rust is a phenomenon that most engineers would like to avoid, but is actually ideal in weathering steel. Weathering steel, also known as Corten steel
, is characterized by what the American Society of Steel Construction (AISC) describes as "useful corrosion," in which naturally occurring corrosion not only extends the life of weathering steel structures, but also saves time and cost. Money related to paint and maintenance. Unlike corrosion-resistant steel, corrosion on weather-resistant steel does not indicate deterioration. In fact, the opposite is true.
Corten is the trademark of the United States Steel Company (USS), which is a well-known brand of Weathering steel. The Corten was originally named ASTM Standard A242, but is now accepted by newer ASTM steel plates and coils A606.Weathering steel is specially developed and contains small amounts of copper, phosphorus, chromium, nickel and silicon. These materials allow the Corten steel plates
to rust when exposed to the weather without the need for paint.
But instead of destroying the metal, rust actually protects Corten from further corrosion. Weather-resistant steel, which does not appear to be significant at first, forms a rust-proof coating when exposed to moisture and oxygen. The barrier eventually seals the exposed Corten steel plates over the elements that made them rust in the first place. According to AISC, "This stable barrier layer is highly resistant to further corrosion, reducing it to a lower value."
Weathering steel is also readily available for high strength, low maintenance costs and cost-effectiveness. The numerous benefits of weathering steel make the Corten steel ideal for structural and architectural applications
such as Bridges, roofing, sculpture, and utilities. Bridges built with Corten are known to last 120 years and require minimal maintenance, which requires regular inspections and cleaning. Because weathering steel does not require paint, builders can also avoid health problems associated with volatile organic compounds (VOC) found in some paints.
The popularity of weathering steel can also be explained in part by its attractive appearance. The structure, made of Corten steel plates, has a red, orange rust color. As the rust deepened and the steel became more exposed to the environment, it developed a deep reddish brown patina that attracted many people to it. Weeks before the opening of the Barclays Center, built by Corten, the New York Times reported on the unusual appearance of Weathering steel. The weathered steel structure, the article observed, "looks suspiciously unfinished to the casual observer, but has many fans in the art and architecture world."Corten steel is widely welcomed by architects and design engineers
for its considerable benefits. Weathering steel has proven long-term service capacity and requires minimal maintenance. The structure made of Corten steel plates does not require painting, which is good for the environment and the bottom line. In addition, weather-resistant steel also rusts, not to damage Corten, but to beautify it. Beautiful and practical weathering steel is an excellent building material.