Steel billets result from the second stage of the steel production process. They are hot-rolled or forged from an ingot or strand cast. Smaller and longer than a bloom, billets are usually a square cross section less than 36 square inches. A Billet can be described as a section of steel used for rolling into bars, rods and sections. It is therefore considered a semi finished product and can be a produced by means of following the ingot route or increasingly today produced directly by continuous casting.
Steel billets are considered fresh and raw, and they must undergo a series of manufacturing processes before they can be used for various purposes. Steel billets are also known for their malleability and ductility and have distinct characteristics as compared with already furnished steel bars and products.
They are used for the manufacture of all 'long' steel products such as bars, rods, pipes, tubes, wire and wire products.
Steel slabs are hot-rolled from an ingot or strand cast. They are wide and rectangular in shape. Slabs are flat, semi-finished, rolled ingots with a specific width and cross-dimensional section. They can be produced as ingots or through continuous-casting. They are used for the manufacture of all 'flat' steel products such as coils, sheets, strip, plates and other flat-rolled steel products.
Blooms are hot-rolled or forged from an ingot or strand cast. They usually have a square cross section exceeding 36 square inches. They are mainly used in the manufacture of ‘long’ products such as structural shapes, structural profiles, building beams, rails and columns.