“A metal is a light body that can be forged,” wrote Lomonosov, pointing out the main property of the material. Each of the famous metals has its own "biography" and its own, distinct from others, qualities. Copper opened the era of metals in the history of civilization. The "Copper Age" was called the transition period from the late Neolithic to the "Bronze". At this time, the first copper products appeared - first jewelry, and then weapons. The demand for copper only grew over time.
In the Ancient East, copper products date back to the 4th millennium BC, in Europe - the 3rd. 5000 years - this was the shelf life of copper water pipes in the Cheops pyramid. Many things a person needs are made of a beautiful and durable metal of honey and pinkish-red color (Latin name Cuprum - Cu).
Copper is rarely found in nature in the form of nuggets. That is why in ancient times man first came across this metal. He turned out to be amazing. Easy to handle, not afraid of water and not rusty. When copper was mined from copper ore in huge volumes and smelting workshops started working, it turned out that the metal melts relatively easily at 1083 ° C and has high ductility. Copper can be rolled into the thinnest foil with a thickness of only 0.03 mm, and the wire can be pulled out much thinner than a human hair.
The domestic use of copper is well known in the foreseeable past. Samovars, chandeliers, trays, candlesticks, bells, buttons and much more were made from it. The work of technology of past centuries was unthinkable without copper parts, be it a loom, a clock, a steam locomotive or a steamer.
Today's industrial copper has several grades. Each of them is used for the production of different parts that require their own degree of elongation, punching force and resistance to rolling. The metal has high electrical and thermal conductivity. If we take the thermal conductivity of granite as a unit, then it will be 21 times higher for steel, and 177 times for copper. That is why pure copper is widely used in the manufacture of many parts in refrigerators and heating devices, in a variety of electronic devices, radio and electrical engineering, from refrigerators to microwaves.
Copper is easy to solder and therefore is indispensable in the manufacture of boilers. Metal is widely used in the manufacture of car radiators, heat exchangers, heating systems and solar panels. The unique ability of the metal to resist corrosion makes copper and its alloys indispensable in shipbuilding, in the production of pipelines and valves in water-pressure systems. It is important that these parts are safe when transporting drinking water.
Surprising fact: bacteria do not develop on the surface of copper, and therefore it is purposefully used in the manufacture of equipment for hospitals. Copper also finds the most adequate place for its properties in the details of air conditioners. Copper cookware is still in price all over the world. It attracts chefs with its high heat transfer and the ability to heat evenly. Due to the fact that this beautiful and comfortable metal in processing is easily polished to the desired texture and the desired shine, jewelers and interior designers are happy to hire it.
Copper is a component of many alloys. Phosphorous copper is especially in demand, from which all kinds of springy electrical wires and contacts are made, easily restoring their shape with slight bends.
The usual "copper" coins are minted from an alloy of copper and aluminum. There is also copper in our "silver" little things in wallets - as an additive to the base metal nickel. The famous monument to Peter I in St. Petersburg, which is called "Medny", is not made of copper, but of bronze. Bronzes are alloys of copper with tin, aluminum, manganese, cadmium, beryllium, lead and other metals. Any bronze must contain at least 50% copper.With other proportions, it will be a different alloy: babbitt, manganin, etc. Copper-nickel alloys are used not only in the mint, but also in large-scale projects - in the design of airplanes and spaceships.