Posco mangalloy gets official nod

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Posco mangalloy gets official nod

Posco’s high manganese steel was recently acknowledged as a technical standard by the American Society for Testing and Materials International, according to the company Tuesday.

ASTM International is an organization that develops and publishes technology standards for materials, products and services. Its standards are frequently used as reference data for technicians as well as governmental bodies worldwide.

“To be acknowledged as an ASTM standard is significant because it’s an international approval that our high manganese steel is safe to be used,” the company said in a statement. Posco’s technologies have been acknowledged as standards by ASTM in the past, but this is the first time a whole new product has been registered.

An alloy containing the chemical element manganese, manganese steel, or mangalloy, is a material that boasts greater hardness and ductility than normal steel.

But the high manganese steel that Posco developed after ten years of research has a manganese content of around 15 percent, which is higher than ordinary mangalloy’s of around 12 percent. The product endures extremely low temperatures - down to -196 degrees Celsius (-321 degrees Fahrenheit) - and is therefore good for storing or transferring liquefied natural gas, which is liquid at very cold temperatures.

The materials most frequently used for LNG storage tanks are nickel alloy, stainless steel and aluminum. Posco’s high manganese steel is 20 to 30 percent cheaper and easier to weld.

As governments strengthen environmental regulations, the number of ships that run on eco-friendly LNG are rising as an alternative to those that run on fossil fuel. LNG is also cheaper than oil. But in the past, tanks to store LNG on ships were expensive.

Posco supplied its product to Hyundai Mipo Dockyard last year, to be used for the fuel tank in a 50,000-dwt bulk carrier, half-powered by LNG.

BY SONG KYOUNG-SON [song.kyoungson@joongang.co.kr]
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