Metals in the form in which they are received from the nature are not useful for many types of applications. The discovery of alloys is considered no less than a revolution that influenced a number of industrial applications in a big way. Today, iron and aluminum alloys and those of a number of other metals like tin, cobalt, nickel; gold and silver form the base of many important industries.
The advantage of alloys is that they exhibit properties of all the constituting metals. For example, these alloys exhibit better thermal properties, tensile strength and wider range of melting points. Here are some sections about the most popular alloys, along with their industrial uses and applications.
Used for applications with low friction requirement, brass is one of the popular metal alloys made by mixing copper with zinc. Valves, locks, bearings and gears are some examples of these applications. Moreover, brass is known for its recyclable nature. Another common copper alloy is bronze which contains tin as another constituent metal. Apart from being a popular material for sculptures, bronze is also widely used for making window weather-stripping and automobile transmission bearings.
Needless to say, the aluminum alloys are the most popular materials that have great importance in many industrial uses. Consisting of aluminum, nickel and cobalt, alnico is one of these alloys and is used in electric motors, cow magnets, sensors and microphones. Duralumin is made of aluminum, copper, manganese and magnesium and is an extremely popular alloy for aircraft structures, truck wheels, auto body panel sheets, forgings, pistons and many other applications. Among other aluminum alloys is magnalium which is also used in many automobile and aircrafts parts.
Iron needs no introduction for being a popular choice for many metal alloys like steel and stainless steel. Steel is extremely admirable for its high rust resistance, tensile strength and welding ability. The alloy is a useful material for the construction of railways, roads, bridges and skyscrapers. Stainless steel is a famous variety of steel and is used in making surgical instruments, industrial equipments, bridges and aircraft and automobile body parts.
Iron alloys with carbon as an important constituent are extensively accepted. Wrought iron, for example, has applications like manufacturing of gates and furniture items like racks, tables, desks and chairs. Pig iron is used in blast furnaces and different varieties of cast iron are used in machine tools, gears crankshafts and cooking accessories like pans.
Other Metal Alloys
Tin is also used as the main constituent for many alloys like pewter and solder. While pewter is mainly used as a decorative material, solder is a widely used material for joining (called soldering) metals for many important industrial applications. Sterling silver is a well-known alloy of silver. It is useful not only as a jewelry material, but also for making medical and musical instruments.
Nichrome, an alloy of nickel, is used in explosive industry for electric ignition systems. Resistance wires made of this alloy too are popular.
Different types of industry owners can obtain genuine and pure forms of metal alloys from various parts of the world. Comparing the varieties using online catalogues can help in this direction.