About Stainless Steel
Stainless Steel was developed in the early 1900's due to a high demand for more durable materials. Through the experimentation of adding other metals to regular carbon steel it was discovered that Chromium had the ability to render stain resistant properties that metallurgists were looking for. Having improved the corrosion resistance of steel, cutlery was one of the first commercial applications for this new alloy. Harry Brearly of Sheffield, England is often credited with the discovery of the effects of Chromium on Carbon steel, somewhere between 1903 and 1913.
"Stainless Steel" is a somewhat generic name for a variety of grades and types of steel which are produced for their oxidation and corrosion resistance. In fairly broad and simplified terms, stainless steels are iron alloys containing a minimum of 10% Chromium. While Chromium gives the steel most of its "stainless" qualities, other elements are added for structure, strength and malleability. Some of these include Nickel, Silicon, Manganese, Sulphur, Molybdenum and Titanium, as well non-metallic elements such as Carbon and Nitrogen.