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A Profile of the Steel Industry by Peter Warrian

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Chapter 9

Steel and Technological Change

Technology has been at the core of what the steel industry and its companies do. Major shifts in the business models for the industry have been strongly correlated with new production technologies at the furnace end and at the rolling and finishing ends of the business. Examples have been previously discussed in Chapters 3, 4, and 8. A high-level view suggests a series of periodic major changes such as the Open Hearth being replaced by the BOF then the EAFs and the continuous casters. For economists and modelers of change, the industry has been characterized by step-function changes in technology. This suggests a linear path of punctuated equilibrium—long periods of incremental changes then disruption ...

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