Without a single doubt, red metals have become an inseparable part of our civilization. At the same time, even though red metals are one of the most important materials required for the development and existence of modern civilization, there is not much information about them.
So, what are red metals? And what is their role in our society that makes them so important?
It is true that red metals are very diverse and unique when it comes to their quality, ways for creation, and plication. However, there is one metal that unites them all: copper.
The main feature of copper that makes this metal special because people can use it in its regular state. Copper is very famous for being a conductive material. Furthermore, it is very corrosion-resistant and formable. Nowadays, most frequently, this metal is used n plumbing, electrical materials, and machinery.
Furthermore, copper is widely used to make other red metals, for example, brass and bronze. Their alloys contain other metals blended with copper.
Let’s take a brass. To make this metal, one needs to add zinc to copper. The characteristics of this metal highly depend on the amount of zinc in its alloy. Each alloy of brass has its own application. The more zinc you have in your alloy, the more bendable, lighter, and grounded will be the metal. Most frequently, brass is used in engineering and in other fields of business, because of its metallic look. Also, one can face galvanized steel sheets which are made out of brass.
Bronze, just like brass, is another metal that can’t exist without copper. Only, in this case, one needs to utilize combined with other elements tin instead of zinc. Among different sorts of bronze, bearing bronze is the most popular one. One of the main reasons why it is so popular lies in the fact that it is very corrosion resistant and hard. These qualities make this metal perfect for use in different equipment, such as bushings and guiding elements.
Humanity has been using copper and its alloys for thousands of years. However, the manner of how people produce, use, and combine copper has changed with time.
Nowadays, we extract approximately 80% of all our copper from sulfide metals. In these metals, copper is bound with sulfur. There are several ways of the refinery that help to separate the copper from sulfur.
All mixes of copper require their own ways of assembling, which depend on the desired attributes of metals and their final shape. The standard procedure for both metals requires warming and cooling. During this process, alloying components and copper blend, dissolve and get prepared for further application.
- High Conductivity Copper: this one is the purest form of copper. The level of cu in its alloy should be more than 99.3%. This copper is applied for electrical applications, for instance, wire, and link. This is because it is very flexible and has a high level of electrical conductivity.
- Deoxidized Copper: this type of copper is almost completely oxygen-free. It is very easy to weld or braze this material without additional risk of embrittlement. Most frequently, deoxidized copper I used in tubes for gas, water, heating systems, and roofs. After exposure to the outdoor air, this material creates a beautiful patina.
- Copper Alloys: by adding different materials to copper, one can create many diverse alloys. Each of those alloys has its own qualities and applications. The most popular copper alloys are made by adding tin, zinc, nickel, and aluminum. Here is the list of those metals and alloys:
- Aluminum-Bronze: copper and aluminum
- Brass: copper and zinc
- Bronze: copper and tin
- Copper-Nickel: copper and nickel
- Nickel Silver: copper, nickel and zinc
- Phosphor Bronze: copper, tin and phosphorus
- Red Brass: copper, tin and zinc
Why Use Red Metals?
Just like in the case with aluminum, it is possible to fully recycle copper without the loss of value when it comes to both crude copper and manufactured items. Furthermore, red metals have very distinctive and useful for use in everyday life characteristics. The combination of these two aspects makes red metals one of the most important metals on Earth.
These metals play important roles in our lives and help us to improve living conditions starting from the development and engineering of new technologies, up to media communications, and hardware.