Dimensional feasibility of Amstrong® family extended

ArcelorMittal Europe – Flat Products has recently expanded the dimensional feasibility of the Amstrong® family to ensure it offers the widest range on the market. Amstrong® now comes in standard thicknesses from 1.5 to 25 mm and widths of up to 2150 mm, while Amstrong® Ultra grades are now available in thicknesses from 4 to 20 mm and widths up to 2000 mm.

About stow

For more than 40 years, stow’s core business has been the development and manufacturing of top-quality racking systems which are used to store palletised and small goods. The company has a strong focus on producing high-quality and flexible system solutions which fully comply with the latest norms and regulations. More recently, stow has become a major player in the development and deployment of robots which automate the storage and retrieval of stored items.

More info: www.stow-group.com

Amstrong® and Magnelis® help stow create top-quality racking systems

Imagine for a moment that you are building a house, but starting with the inside. What materials would you need to ensure that the interior can withstand the elements until the outer skin of the building is complete? For stow, a leading manufacturer of racking systems used in warehouses, this is a daily challenge. To simplify construction of high-bay warehouses, the racks are the first things installed – up to a year before the external cladding and roofing is applied. This is why stow has selected Amstrong® and Magnelis® from ArcelorMittal Europe – Flat Products as the basis of the racking systems they manufacture. These unique steel solutions can withstand the elements and provide long-term durability.


Published: 2 January 2023

A surge in warehouse demand

Racking systems are used by a wide range of industries to store products ready for delivery to customers and consumers around the world. “The rapid growth in e-commerce over the last few years has fuelled demand for more and bigger warehouses,” notes Karel Boone, Supply Chain and Purchasing Director at stow. “E-commerce requires three times the amount of warehouse space compared to traditional retail. One of the reasons is that this enables companies to hold more inventory so they can meet the next-day delivery expectations of their consumers.”

Pandemic accelerates cooperation

stow began working with ArcelorMittal Europe – Flat Products in 2009 when the company installed the first slitting line at its factory in Dottignies, Belgium. “Rather than buying slit coils from service centres, stow was able to purchase mother coils from ArcelorMittal,” says Karel Boone.

Cooperation with ArcelorMittal expanded during the recent pandemic as Karel Boone explains: “During the initial lockdown, ArcelorMittal became an important steel supplier to stow. ArcelorMittal was able to secure the volumes of Amstrong® and Magnelis® we needed from its mills in Bremen, Germany and Ghent, Belgium with minimal delay. Communication was extremely important during this time. ArcelorMittal kept the lines of communication open and active. Even if it wasn’t good news, we got news – and that allowed us to plan our production accordingly.”

Magnelis® is becoming increasingly important to stow. “We use it in applications where there is friction such as the rails automated shuttles use to move goods around the racks,” says Karel Boone. “We don’t notice any difference when processing Magnelis® compared to hot dip galvanised material. But we do notice the quality. We rarely receive customer complaints about the finishing of parts that are manufactured with Magnelis®.”

New norm, new steels

A recent development in the racking industry has been the release of a new norm for racking systems. “EN 15512:2020 is designed to enhance safety for people working in warehouses,” says Karel Boone. “If we were to use our current grades, we would need more steel to achieve the standard. Instead, we are testing Amstrong® grades such as S460MC, which offers higher strength without increasing the amount of steel required.”

Ensuring that stow meets the new European standard for racking systems and produces environmentally friendly products is a key priority for the company notes Karel Boone: “We are currently developing a roadmap which addresses environmental, social, and governance (ESG) criteria. This is becoming increasingly important to our customers, particularly international brands including IKEA.”

As well as developing the roadmap, stow is taking immediate actions to reduce its carbon footprint. “For example, we ask our suppliers, including ArcelorMittal, to ship products by barge to a local warehouse,” notes Karel Boone. “Every barge takes 50 trucks off the road – significantly reducing our carbon footprint. We’re also keeping up to date with market evolutions and ArcelorMittal solutions such as XCarb® recycled and renewably produced products.”

ArcelorMittal Europe Communications

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