Copper alloys with the best known like bronze and brass exhibit these qualities like thermal and electrical conductivity, corrosion resistance, and high strength.
Copper alloys are basically dominant in copper content and are highly influenced by copper properties. Copper is one of the best elements that possess exceptional physical and mechanical properties. It is known for its unique qualities which is why it is considered best engineering material specifically used for bearing applications.
Copper alloy has these following characteristics:
- Excellent toughness and ductility across high levels of temperature
- High thermal conductivity
- Great corrosion resistance in a variety of environments
Different alloying elements are added to metals to enhance their characteristics for all their designated applications. Alloying is proven to reduce or increase the hardness, strength, thermal and electrical conductivity, ductility, corrosion resistance as well as change the metal’s exterior color. Some of the best-known copper alloys are bronze and brass.
Bronze Copper Alloy
Bronze has tin as the principal additional content. Other elements like manganese, zinc, nickel, and aluminum are also added to its content. The addition of these elements contributes to its overall properties including the improvement of its machinability, ductility, and tougher stiffness.
Brass Copper Alloy
Brass has zinc as the principal additional content. Proportions of copper and zinc content are varied to create a wide range of brasses along with a variation of properties. It is also considered as a substitutional alloy which it has two constituents that can replace each other in the same crystal structure.
Such alloying elements of copper elements have effects in their characteristics mainly on the following:
Strength – Copper alloys can be straightened by a solid solution in which it can produce two distinct microstructures when its limit is exceeded. These two microstructure forms have different hardnesses and compositions which will either result in a more stronger copper alloy or a soft one. Alloying coppers with other elements can help them strengthen but might have the tendency to increase in their prize.
Thermal and electrical conductivity – Pure coppers are such good conductors of heat and electricity. Once their impurity levels are decreased, they can increase their capacities of conductivity. Proper selection of alloying elements plays on the capability of copper alloys to conduct heat and electricity. As enhancing strength and hardness is focused, material’s conductivity is severely affected.
Color – Each element really has different effect on copper’s color once alloyed to it. Every color comes out in the result is relatively based on what elements are added to the alloy. Copper alloys can be reddish, brownish gold, or tough pitch in color.
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