Non-ferrous metals are metals that do not contain iron as a major component. They are generally lighter and stronger than ferrous metals and are used for a wide range of applications. Non-ferrous metals are often used in the construction, electrical, and automotive industries because of their corrosion-resistant properties.
Non-ferrous metals have many advantages over their ferrous counterparts. Non-ferrous metals are generally lighter than ferrous metals and can be formed into shapes with greater ease. They are also much more resistant to corrosion, making them a great choice for applications where durability is key. Additionally, non-ferrous metals are often less expensive than ferrous metals, making them a cost-effective choice for many applications.
The most common non-ferrous metals include aluminum, copper, brass, zinc, and tin. Each of these materials has its own unique properties and advantages.
Aluminum is extremely lightweight and resistant to corrosion, making it an excellent choice for aircraft and automotive applications. The most widely used aluminum alloys are the 1000 series, 6000 series, and 7000 series. 1000 series aluminum alloys are commonly used for industrial purposes, such as transportation and packaging. They are characterized by excellent corrosion resistance, low density, and good electrical and thermal conductivity. 6000 series aluminum alloys are primarily used for structural components and automotive parts due to their strength and formability. 7000 series aluminum alloys are primarily used in aerospace applications due to their excellent strength-to-weight ratio and corrosion resistance.
Copper is an excellent conductor of electricity, making it a popular choice for wiring and electrical components. Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc, making it very strong and resistant to corrosion. The most common copper alloys are brass, bronze and copper-nickel. Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc, and bronze is an alloy of copper and tin. Copper-nickel is an alloy of copper, nickel and often other elements such as iron or manganese. In addition, copper alloys are often used in specialized applications, such as nickel-silver (an alloy of copper, nickel and zinc), phosphor bronze (an alloy of copper and tin with small amounts of phosphorous), and aluminum bronze (an alloy of copper, aluminum and often other elements).
Zinc alloys are alloys of zinc, typically containing up to about 20% of another metal such as aluminum, copper, or magnesium. Zinc alloys are used in a variety of applications, including die casting, and are popular in the automotive and aerospace industries. Zinc alloys are also used in jewelry and coins, as well as in many electrical and electronic applications. The most commonly used zinc alloys are Zamak, ZA-8, ZA-12, and ZA-27.
Tin alloys are widely used in many industries due to their corrosion resistance, low melting point and ease of casting. The most commonly used tin alloys are pewter, Babbitt and solder. Pewter is an alloy of tin, antimony and lead that is used to make decorative kitchen items, jewelry and pottery. Babbitt is an alloy of tin, antimony and copper which is used in bearings and other machine components. Solder is an alloy of tin and lead which is used in electrical connections.