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Steel rebars are one of the most in demand commodities in the construction sector. A steel rebar can form a strong bond with concrete and provide structural support to the buildings. TMT steel rebars are widely used in construction sector in India.
What is a steel rebar?
Steel rebars are reinforcing bars made of steel. When you look at rebars you can notice a twisted and ribbed surface which enables them to bond better with concrete.
These rebars are used to improve the tensile strength of concrete structures so that the latter can withstand tensile, bending, torsion, and shearing loads. Most of the TMT bars that you can spot lying around in a construction site are TMT rebars.
Rebar is short for reinforcing bar or reinforcement bar. It is a metal bar that is used to increase the tensile strength of concrete.
How is a steel rebar manufactured?
Step 1: Steel billets are heated at high temperatures
Step 2: Heated steel billets are passed through one or more pairs of coils to reduce thickness as per the specifications of the design of the rebar
Step 3: These smaller billets are passed through a hot rolling mill stand to be shaped into a steel bar
Step 4: The last rolling machine of the rolling mill stand adds ribs on the surface of the bars to make them rebars meant for high strength concrete applications
Benefits of steel rebars
There are multiple benefits of steel rebars in construction:
- Contributing tensile strength to concrete structures
- Improves structural integrity by preventing cracking of concrete surfaces
- Rebars offer more longevity to structures
- Cost efficient as it fosters lesser use of concrete
Types of a steel rebar
The types of steel rebars are based on the type of steel used to produce rebars and the production method used to manufacture them. The rebar types are simply called bars instead of rebars, but they are reinforcing bars with ribbed surfaces.
Have a look at the types of reinforcement bars that are commonly used by the Indian construction industry to strengthen the concrete structures:
- Hot rolled deformed bars
Popularly known as Thermo mechanically treated bars or TMT bars, hot rolled deformed bars are used to build RCC (Reinforced Cement Concrete) structures. These rebars are commonly used for their superior tensile strength.
- Cold rolled steel bars
Cold rolled steel bars are made at room temperature. These bars have poor strength and can easily bent. Therefore, these bars have become obsolete in the industry, but these are used for construction projects that does not need much tolerance.
- Twisted steel bars
Twisted steel bars are made by spinning up to 7 wires together into a strand. The twisting process of the steel bars enhances their strength and ductility, making them more resistant to bending and breaking under heavy loads. These are typically used as supports of frameworks for prestressing RCCs.
- Mild steel bars
Mild steel bars accompany a plain surface and round shape unlike the usual ribbed surface of rebars. They are used as a reinforcement in beams, columns, and slabs made of concrete to support the weight of the structure and resist the forces of tension and compression. These rebars do not bond well with concrete, and are poor in quality and therefore are used in small projects with budget restrictions.
Uses and applications
Given below is a list of application of steel rebars:
- Dams, reservoirs and aqueducts
- Concrete foundations
- High-rise buildings
- Parking ramps
- Roads exposed to relentless traffic
Grades of steel rebars in India
As per the IS code these are grades of steel that can be used for rebar construction:
- Fe 415, Fe 415D, Fe 415S;
- Fe 500, Fe 500D, Fe 500S;
- Fe 550, Fe 550D; and
- Fe 600
Steel rebar sizes
The size of the rebar is determined by its diameter. Common sizes produced by manufacturers in India includes 6mm, 8mm, 10mm, 12mm, 16mm, 20mm, 25mm, 32mm, 40mm, 45mm and 50mm.
Steel rebars vs steel bars
Steel bars and steel rebars are both used in construction but rebars find more use as they can form a better bond with concrete. Here are the key factors where steel bars differ from rebars:
- Steel rebars have a ribbed surface while bars have a smooth surface.
- Steel bars have lower tensile strength compared to reinforcing bars.
- Steel bars sport better corrosion resistance especially compared with twisted rebars as the twisting process destroys the protective oxide layer.
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