A type of specialty steel created by introducing silicon during the steelmaking process. Electrical steel exhibits certain magnetic properties, which make it optimum for use in transformers, power generators and electric motors.
The metal's grain runs parallel within the steel, permitting easy magnetization along the length of the steel. Although grain-oriented steel may be twice as expensive to produce, its magnetic directional characteristics enable power transformers, made from this metal, to absorb less energy during operation.
Because there is no preferential direction for magnetization, non-grain-oriented steel is best used in rotating apparatus such as electric motors.