According to industry sources, the global market for high speed steel (HSS) cutting tools is expected to grow to more than $10 billion by 2020. Ricky Payling, product strategy manager for round tools at Dormer Pramet, looks at why HSS remains a popular option, the different compositions available and how the material has adapted to a fast-changing industry.  Despite the growing competition from solid carbide, HSS continues to be popular with manufacturers due to its high wear resistance and excellent hardness and toughness properties. HSS cutting tools are best suited to mass production environments where tool life, versatility, productivity and tool cost are of the highest importance to an end-user. It therefore still has a major part to play in efficient and reliable machining of many components. Also, the current focus for a good product quality, which meets the customer application requirements at a cost-effective price, is proving attractive in the present global economic climate. To support the growing worldwide demand for HSS, cutting tool manufacturers have committed extensive resources to this segment. This includes increased investment in not just new product developme...