Steel Heroes - Sir Robert Hadfield

  • 1859 – 1940
  • Master Cutler of Hallamshire 1899
  • Bessemer Gold Medal 1904
  • President of the Iron and Steel Institute 1905-7
  • Knighted 1908
  • Fellow of the Royal Society 1909
  • Elliot Cresson Gold Medal of the Franklin Institute 1910
  • Honorary DMet, Sheffield University 1911
  • Honorary DSc Leeds University 1912
  • Made a Baronet 1917
  • Freedom of the City of London 1917
  • John Fritz Gold Medal of the Engineering Foundation 1921
  • Thomas Turner Gold Medal Birmingham University 1923
  • Officer of the Legion of Honour 1925
  • Honorary DSc Oxford University 1927
  • Freedom of the City of Sheffield 1939

Worked in his Father’s steel castings company, and took over control in 1883.

The business became a limited liability company with Hadfield as Chairman and MD in 1889.

In 1913, the company assumed the name of “Hadfields”

He researched the effects of increasing manganese additions to carbon steel, discovering that when the Mn content reached 12-13% it offered remarkable resistance to wear.  It was used for machine parts, and steel helmets in the First World War.

He also developed Silicon steels with 1½% Si, and these were used in the top sides of the ships Mauretania and Lusitania, as a result of high tensile strength.

He researched many other aspects of steel metallurgy.

He presented 23 papers to the ISI, and many others to a variety of other audiences, and published two books.

He was elected an Honorary Member of 27 scientific and technical institutions at home and abroad.


Previous Hero

Next Hero

Return to Steel Heroes