Definitions of Common Steel Products

Steel comes in many different shapes and sizes. From semi-finished products to flat and long ready materials, we have compiled this list of the most common steel products traded on our platform in accordance with the European standards.

In this article you will find:

1. Semi-finished products and liquid steel

2. Finished products

2.1 Flat Products

2.2 Long Products

1. Semi-Finished Products and Liquid Steel

Semi-Finished steel products are obtained through the following processes:

• Continuous casting, which may or may not be followed by rolling, forging, or cutting

• Pressure casting;

• Rolling, forging, or cutting of ingots or large section continuous cast products, which are generally intended for conversion into flat or long products by hot rolling or forging, or the manufacture of forgings.

Liquid Steel

The term "liquid steel" refers to steel that has been melted from its raw form and is ready to be poured.


The method of creating ingots involves pouring liquid steel into molds of a shape that will allow it to be processed into semi-finished goods, flat, or long items, typically through hot rolling or forging.

According to the cross section a distinction is made between the following: — ingots with a cross section that can be square, rectangular (of width up to twice the thickness), polygonal, round, oval, or shaped according to the profile to be rolled; and slab ingots with a rectangular cross section of width twice the thickness or greater.

Blooms and Billets 

Blooms and billets are semi-finished steel products which are either rolled or continuously cast and are then transformed by rolling to obtain finished products.

The distinction between the two comes from their cross section area - if it is greater than 40,000mm² the product is defined as a bloom. If it is smaller than 40,000mm² it is a billet. 


Slabs are a semi-finished product. Products with a thickness of 50 mm or more and a width twice the thickness or greater.

2. Finished Products

2.1 Flat Products

Flat steel products have nearly rectangular cross sections, with the width being much greater than the thickness.

Plates and Sheets

Plates and sheets are flat rolled or cold rolled products, with the edges free to deform, supplied flat and generally in square or rectangular shapes with a width of 600 mm or more, but also in any other shape, such as circular or according to a design sketch.

Plates and sheets can be made:

• directly on a reversing mill (this product is commonly referred to as a quarto plates or heavy plates), or by cutting from a parent plate rolled on a reversing mill;

• by cutting from a hot rolled wide strip; these items are commonly referred to as hot rolled sheets or plates.


Coils are a finished steel product (for example a sheet or a strip) that has been rolled and then coiled or wound.


Strips are hot-rolled or cold-rolled flat goods that are coiled into a standard coil right after the final rolling pass, pickling, or continuous annealing. Strips can be supplied as cut lengths or sheets after decoiling and transverse cutting.

Wide strips are strips with a width of 600 mm or over.

Slit wide strips have a rolling width of 600 mm or over, and are then slit to widths less than 600 mm before supply.

Narrow strips are strips with a rolling width of less than 600 mm.

Electrical Steels

Steels with magnetic characteristics that are suited for usage in electrical machines' magnetic circuits. They are supplied in the form of cold-rolled sheets or strips, generally less than 2 mm thick and of width up to 1,500 mm.


Backplates are made of low carbon, non-alloy steel that has been single or double cold reduced and is available in strip or sheet form. Blackplates are normally used to manufacture tinplates or electrolytic chromium coated sheets.


Tinplates are low carbon, non-alloy steel strips or sheets that have been continuously electrolytically coated with tin on both surfaces after being single- or double-cold reduced. Tinplateс can also be made by hot dipping in a bath of molten tin.

Single reduced tinplates are produced in thicknesses ranging from 0.17 mm to 0.49 mm

Double reduced tinplates are produced in thicknesses ranging from 0.14 mm to 0.29 mm.

Tinplates are usually provided with a passivation treatment and a protective coating of oil.

Tinned Sheets and Strips

Tinned sheets and strips are non-alloy, low carbon steels that are delivered in strips or sheets with a thickness of at least 0,50 mm and tin coated on both surfaces are known as tinned sheets and strips.

Electrolytic Chromium/Chromium Oxide Coated Steels (ECCS)

ECCSs are non-alloy, low-carbon steels that are produced in strips or sheets and may have undergone single or double cold reduction. They are then cathodically coated on both surfaces with a duplex film of metallic chromium adjacent to the steel substrate and an outer layer of hydrated chromium oxide or hydroxide.

Single reduced ECCSs are produced in thicknesses ranging from 0.17 mm to 0.49 mm

Double reduced ECCSs are produced in thicknesses ranging from 0.14 mm to 0.29 mm.

Profiled Sheets 

Profiled sheets are sheets whose width is significantly bigger than their profile's height.

A distinction is made between:

• Products with broad or small longitudinal corrugations that are primarily used for cladding, flooring, and roofing. They are known as corrugated sheet;

• Products with rectangular or trapezoidal longitudinal ribs, which are referred to as ribbed sheets.

2.2 Long products

Long steel products are products that do not conform to the definition of flat products (steel products that have nearly rectangular cross sections, with the width being much greater than the thickness).


Rods are long, hot-rolled products with an average nominal size of 5 mm or greater that are coiled into irregular coils.

The cross section may be round, oval, square, rectangular, hexagonal, octagonal, half round or of any similar shape. Its surface is smooth. Rods are generally intended to undergo further processing. They may also be used, with or without further processing, e.g. cold deforming, for the fabrication of welded mesh or for other elements used to reinforce concrete.


Wires are made by cold drawing a rod through a reduction die or by forcing it through rollers under pressure. Wires can be uncoated (as drawn or annealed) or coated (e.g. with zinc, copper, nickel or plastic materials).

Hot-Finished Bars

Hot-Finished Bars are a steel product, which is produced in straight lengths only (differentiating them from rods)

Hot-Rolled Bars

Hot Rolled Bars are a steel product, which is produced in straight lengths of constant transverse section having a solid (convex) cross section. They can be:

• Round Bars

Round bars are steel bars, which are defined as having a circular cross section with a minimum diameter of 8 mm.

• Square, Hexagonal or Octagonal Bars

Square, hexagonal or octagonal bars are steel bars having square, hexagonal or octagonal cross-sections; the side is generally more than 8 mm for squares or more than 13 mm for hexagons.

• Flat Bars

Flat bars are steel bars of rectangular cross section with a thickness of more than 5 mm and with a width not more than 150mm.

• Bars of Special Shape

Bars of special shape are steel bars of full cross section shapes including trapezoids, bevels, triangles, bars for grooved springs, semi rounds and half flat semi rounds.

• Forged Bars

Forged bars are steel bars which have undergone forging without subsequent hot conversion.

• Hollow Mining Drill Bars

Hollow mining drill bars are steel bars with an internal hollow of any cross section shape, suitable for the production of drill bits, and with a maximum external cross section dimension over 15 mm and up to and including 52mm, which is at least twice the maximum dimension of the internal hollow's cross section.

Sheet Piling

Sheet piling is a material that is produced by hot rolling or cold forming (drawing, bending, roll forming, etc.) into a shape that can be used to create continuous walls or barriers by interlocking the joints or fitting of longitudinal grooves or by means of special fasteners.

Mining frame sections

Mining frame sections are steel products with cross sections in the shape of the letter “Ι” or the Greek letter Omega (Ω)

Heavy Sections 

Heavy sections are hot rolled steel products with cross sections in the shape of the letters Ι, H, U

• Special Heavy Sections

Special heavy sections are heavy steel sections with extra features like asymmetric or uneven flanges or non-standard web thickness

• Bearing Piles

Bearing piles are heavy steel sections with identical thicknesses of the web and flanges.

Welded Sections

Welded sections are similar to heavy sections, but are made up by welding together combinations of hot rolled long products, hot rolled flat products or cold rolled flat products

Cold-Formed Sections 

Cold formed sections are a cold formed long products having various cross section shapes

Small U, Ι and H Sections

Small U, Ι and H sections are steel sections with a cross section shape resembling the letters U, Ι or H. Their web height is less than 80 mm


Angles are steel sections with a cross section shape resembling the letter L.

Bulb Flats

Bulb flats are steel products with rectangular cross section shapes and a bulge along the full length of a longitudinal edge of one of the wider surfaces. Typically, they have a width of up to 430 mm.


Tubes are long, hollow steel products with two open ends. They typically have. either a round or polygonal cross-section. Tubes can have interior and/or external surfaces coated (organic or metallic coating), integral or fitting flanges, or they can be finished at the ends, for example by threading or flaring.

Seamless Tubes

Seamless tubes are a steel product which was created as a final product without welding adjacent edges of other steel products together.

Welded Tubes

Welded tubes are a steel product which is created by welding adjacent edges of other steel products together.

Hollow Sections

Hollow sections are seamless or welded tubes which are used in construction.

Hollow Bars

Hollow bars are circular seamless tubes intended for the manufacture of engineering components

Source: BS EN 10079:2007, Definition of steel products

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