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The Kallanish Glossary aims to be a useful resource for complex industry specific terminology. We are constantly adding to our glossary, so if you have a suggestion or amendment please do get in touch.

Normalising is a process where a heat treatment is applied to steel for relief of internal stress, based on heating and subsequent air cooling. This is a process similar to annealing, where metal is heated to a high temperature and held at this temperature for several hours to improve grain structure. Unlike annealing, however, where the metal is cooled slowly in the furnace, here it is cooled more swiftly by removing it from the furnace to cool in air. This makes the metal stronger and harder than it would be after annealing, and because of this the normalising process is often employed to treat steel plate used for pressure vessel fabrication.


This stands for oil country tubular goods and refers to the group of steel tube products (both seamless and welded) used in vertical oil well applications such as casing, drill pipe, and well tubing.

Open Hearth Furnace

The process of making steel by heating the metal in the hearth of a regenerative furnace. Heat is supplied from a large, luminous flame over the surface, and the refining takes seven to nine hours. 

Organic Coated

Organic coating describes the paint or varnish which is applied as an extra corrosion protection layer to products typically made from zinc-coated sheet.

Oxidising Atmosphere

An oxidising atmosphere contains sufficient oxygen to combine, or oxidise, with certain other elements if they are present. An oxidising atmosphere is key to the success of the basic oxygen steelmaking process for converting liquid pig iron into steel. Oxygen is blown through the molten iron in the BOF vessel, where it combines with and removes unwanted carbon as carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide.


The process by which iron ore is crushed, ground into a powder, rolled into balls and fired in a furnace to produce strong, marble-sized pellets that contain 60% to 65% iron. Raw iron ore pellets are generally manufactured within certain size categories and with mechanical properties high enough to maintain usefulness during the stresses of transference, transport, and use. 


Pickling is a metal surface treatment used to remove impurities, such as stains, inorganic contaminants, rust or scale from ferrous metals, copper, and aluminium alloys. Through a continuous process,steel is uncoiled and sent through a series of hydrochloric acid baths that remove oxides such as rust. The steel sheet is then rinsed and dried.

Pig Iron

A key intermediate material in the integrated (converter-based) steelmaking process, pig iron is the product of smelting iron ore, coke and limestone in a blast furnace. Pig iron has a very high carbon content, which makes it very brittle and not useful directly as a material except for limited applications. 


Plate is thick, flat-rolled steel produced from slab or ingot, and is mostly sold as discrete pieces but also coiled. It is available in carbon, alloy and stainless grades. It has a width of more than eight inches, with a thickness ranging from one quarter of an inch to more than one foot.

Powder Metals

These are metals that have been converted into fine powders for subsequent processing into finished parts. The powder is most typically produced by atomisation, whereby a steam of molten metal is separated into very small particles by a high pressure jet of gas or liquid, with the particles solidifying before they are collected. Electrolytic, chemical and mechanical methods are also used.

Precipitation Hardening

This is a heat treatment technique which is used on certain forms of stainless steel, as well as certain non-ferrous metals like aluminium, nickel and titanium. The technique, often called age hardening, increases the strength and hardness of the metal. At the end of the heating period the metal is cooled using air, oil or water.

Pulverised Coal Injection

Pulverised coal injection is a process often used in blast furnaces which aims to reduce an integrated mill's reliance on coke. This is important as environmental problems occur due to its production. 

Quarto Plate

Quarto plate is hot rolled from slab. Desired thickness is achieved by passing the slab back and forth through the mill. Quarto plate mills tend to be dedicated to plate rolling, and can achieve a wider, thicker product than on a tandem mill.

Quench Hardening

Quench hardening is a mechanical process in which steel and cast iron alloys are strengthened and hardened. These metals consist of ferrous metals and alloys. The process is achieved by heating the material to a certain temperature. This produces a harder material by either surface hardening or through-hardening varying on the rate at which the material is cooled. The material is then often tempered to reduce the brittleness that may increase from the quench hardening process.


A rebar, or reinforcing bar, is a common steel bar that is used in reinforced concrete and masonry in order to strengthen and hold the concrete in its structure. 

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