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POSCO’s auto steel production evolves

For lighter, stronger auto body frames, Korea’s top steelmaker POSCO has been producing advanced high-strength steel, the latest steel sheet production technology, with growing market demand.

Advanced high-strength steel is one of the fastest-growing material markets in the automotive industry in and out of the country, as it offers enhanced formability and is lighter in weight but stronger than other steel products.

With a growing number of carmakers developing lighter but stronger vehicles to enhance fuel efficiency and better shapes, the global market demand for this premium steel product has been on the rise. Currently, the adoption rate of AHSS products for body frames manufactured by Korean carmakers has already exceeded 20 percent. The adoption rate in the North American market is estimated to jump to 35 percent this year, from 10 percent in 2007.

The premium auto steel sheet sector has been POSCO’s major growth engine, since it has been facing risks from weakening profits and China’s economic slowdown.

POSCO also plans to develop and commercialize an upgraded version of AHSS, namely “eXtra Advanced HSS,” to meet carmakers’ demands for new steel sheets that are cost effective, stronger and ductile.


By Cho Chung-un (christory@heraldcorp.com

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