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The Advantages of Copper – Copper Sheets.

The Advantages of Copper – Copper Sheets.

Hidden from plain sight within the walls of our homes, electronics and household items, copper is an important metal that many of us take for granted. Today, the number of applications for copper has widened immensely, with electrical applications making up about 65% of all copper usage; 25% in construction, 7% in transport, while miscellaneous products making up the remaining 3%.

To better store, transport and shape the metal, copper is usually pressed into copper sheets and copper rods where it is then sent off to the manufacturing industry. The reddish-orange metal is also often alloyed with other metals for use in other applications.

But what are the characteristics of copper that has made it such an essential metal? Below is a short list:

1. High Thermal/Electrical Conductivity.

copper sheets

Image by Karl-Ludwig Poggemann via Flickr

Cheaper and with a higher electrical/thermal conductivity than silver, these properties make copper indispensable in electrical manufacturing. This includes electrical wiring, heating elements, electromagnets, semiconductors, heat sinks, microchips and welding electrodes.  

Copper is also a main component of superconductors which makes all high-end electronics possible. Possessing absolutely zero resistance to electricity, superconductors makes it possible to build faster digital circuits, Magnetic Resonance Imaging machines, particle detectors, electric motors/generators, and even railguns.

2. Soft, Ductile and Malleable.

copper advantages

Copper is a soft, ductile and malleable metal that is easy to shape and stretch without causing breakage. This makes copper a versatile metal for construction and manufacturing.  

A good example of this versatility are copper pipes that can be bent easily to fit around corners. Copper wiring is made by stretching copper rods by specialized machines that thins it into fine wires, while copper sheets are made by running the metal through heavy rollers.

The relative cost-effectiveness and ease of working with copper has also led to widespread use for coinage, simple tools and even decoration. 

3. Resistance to Corrosion

copper sheets

Image by Ra’ike via Wikimedia Commons

Copper’s low reactivity means that it doesn’t corrode easily, making it ideal for pipes (irrigation sprinklers, distillation piping, fuel gas lines) and electrical cables. In addition, when copper is exposed to the atmosphere, a green patina of copper oxide forms naturally on its surface. This protects the metal from further oxidation and corrosion.

4. Anti-bacterial/Biostatic

Copper is also a biostatic, which prevents organisms from latching on and growing on it. Marine hardware made from copper prevents barnacles and mussels from latching onto the hull of ships. In addition, the metal has antimicrobial properties that make it an effective biofouling agent.

5. Recyclable

Copper can be recycled without loss to quality and is worth about 90% its original cost. This makes it far cheaper than extracting and processing new copper (a process that also damages the environment). And although copper is abundant in the earth’s crust, it isn’t finite – and recycling will extend the availability of the resource.

Aluminium, Steel, Copper Supplier in Malaysia – Contact AMS Metal at +607-362 7030 / +607- 550 0755 for more information.

 

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