Invar 36 vs Stainless Steel – What’s the Difference?

Invar 36 and stainless steel are two common materials used in various industries. However, their properties and characteristics differ significantly. This blog post will explore the differences between Invar 36 and stainless steel, including their composition, applications, features, and benefits. Whether you are a researcher, engineer, or buyer, you will find useful insights on choosing between Invar 36 and stainless steel for your next project.

Difference between Invar 36 vs Stainless Steel


Invar 36 is an iron-nickel alloy containing 36% nickel and a low coefficient of thermal expansion. It was originally developed by the French metallurgist Charles Edouard Guillaume in 1896 and named after the French word “invariable,” meaning unchanged. Invar 36 is highly resistant to thermal and mechanical stress, making it ideal for applications that require precise dimensional stability, such as scientific instruments, clock hairsprings, and laser mirrors. In contrast, stainless steel is an alloy of iron, chromium, and other elements that provide corrosion resistance, high strength, and aesthetic appeal. Many types of stainless steel, such as austenitic, ferritic, martensitic, and duplex, each with distinct properties and uses. Stainless steel is widely used in construction, automotive, medical, and food processing due to its versatility and durability.


Invar 36 and stainless steel have different applications due to their unique properties. Invar 36 is commonly used in aerospace, defence, and scientific research applications that require precise measurements and stable performance in extreme environments. For example, Invar 36 is used in cryogenic tanks, satellite components, navigational devices, and atomic clocks. On the other hand, stainless steel is used in a wide range of products, such as kitchenware, cutlery, appliances, buildings, bridges, and medical implants. Stainless steel is also used in chemical processing, oil and gas, marine, and transportation industries due to its resistance to corrosion, erosion, and high temperatures.


Invar 36 and stainless steel have distinct features that make them suitable for different applications. Invar 36 is a low expansion alloy that maintains its dimensions over a wide temperature range, from -200°C to 200°C. Invar 36 has a low thermal conductivity, so it resists heat transfer and keeps its shape better than other metals. Invar 36 is also non-magnetic, making it ideal for applications that require a magnetic-free environment. On the other hand, stainless steel has excellent corrosion resistance due to its chromium content, which forms a passive layer that prevents rusting and staining. Stainless steel also has high strength and ductility, which means it can be shaped and welded into various forms without losing its properties. Stainless steel is also hygienic and easy to clean, making it ideal for food and medical applications.


Invar 36 and stainless steel offer unique benefits to users depending on their needs. Invar 36 offers high precision and stability for applications that require minimal expansion and contraction, such as precision instruments and sensors. Invar 36 also offers low magnetic permeability, which means it can be used in MRI machines and other medical devices without interfering with imaging. On the other hand, stainless steel offers excellent corrosion resistance and longevity, which means it can last for years without rusting or degrading. Stainless steel is also aesthetically attractive and easy to maintain, making it popular in homes and public spaces. For More information visit marketsmartb2b


Invar 36 and stainless steel are different materials with unique properties, applications, features, and benefits. Understanding the differences between these materials is crucial for choosing the right material for your project. Whether you need precision and stability or corrosion resistance and longevity, Invar 36 and stainless steel offer reliable solutions that meet your needs. By considering each material’s composition, applications, features, and benefits, you can determine which one suits your needs best and delivers the performance you expect.

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