Structural Steel Technology

Module aims

  • To understand structural steel physical metallurgy
  • To apply this knowledge to the manufacture of steels, including welding
  • To understand the factors leading to corrosion and brittle fracture of steel

Learning outcomes

On successfully completing this course unit, students will have:

  • Knowledge of the basics of steel metallurgy
  • An understanding of how to change the mechanical and corrosion properties of structural steel, including a basic understanding of how to assess steel for flaws
  • Knowledge of the manufacturing processes for steels and their effect on steel properties, including the effect of welding
  • Knowledge of corrosion processes and corrosion prevention techniques for steel structures

Module syllabus

Underlying chemistry of steel alloys; steel manufacturing methods; microstructure development and the effect of heat treatments; properties of steels, including a qualitative treatment of brittle fracture; quality control principles; methods of fabrication; tolerances and workmanship; connection philosophy; welding technology; corrosion; non-destructive testing; use of relevant codes.




Lecture 01

The nature and properties of materials

Dr Briony Holmes

Lecture 02

Mechanical testing

Dr Briony Holmes

Lecture 03

Strengthening mechanisms

Dr Briony Holmes

Lecture 04

Phase diagrams, Fe-C phase diagram and heat treatment of steel

Dr Briony Holmes

Lecture 05

Phase transformations in steels, TTT and CCT Diagrams, hardenability and the effect of structure on properties

Dr Briony Holmes

Lecture 06


Dr Briony Holmes

Lecture 07

Solidification and welding

Dr Briony Holmes

Lecture 08

Weld defects and NDE inspection

Dr Briony Holmes

Lecture 09

Corrosion and corrosion protection

Dr Briony Holmes

Lecture 10

Brittle fracture

Dr Briony Holmes

Teaching methods

Teaching is primarily by lectures. A visit to a university lab is used to illustrate some of the mechanical testing techniques used.


Total Marks Allocated


Examination / Coursework split

100% /  0%

Rubric: Answer four questions from six; All questions carry equal marks.

Reading list

Module leaders

Dr Briony Kate Holmes