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Copper Trivia

  • Did you know that copper is one of the first metals that was known to the stone age man? Gold came about much later only around 4000 BC.
  • A copper pendant found in Northern Iraq is dated about 8700 BC.
  • When the Pantheon in Rome was built, it was roofed with copper.
  • 200 years ago, a copper conductor was attached to St. Pauls Cathedral to lead lightning strikes safely to the earth.
  • Metallurgists find that alloys of copper possess more attractive properties than the pure metal.
  • The domestic demand for copper in India is around 2,50,000 tonnes per annum.
  • The annual per capita consumption of copper in India is around 0.15 to 0.20 kg. compared to 8 to 12 kg. in developed countries.
  • The US and Chile together account for 41% of the worlds' copper production.
  • About 9% of the total weight of the components of an average car is copper
  • Premium grade recycled copper has at least 95% of the value of the primary metal from newly mined ore.
Steps in the copper production process

  • Mining and crushing
    Sulfide and oxide ores are mined from the underground and crushed to pieces.
  • Grinding
    This process is done in ball or rod mills.
  • Concentrating
    Here the minerals are concentrated and waste is removed. From here the process moves to leachin and electrotwining or smelting and electrolyctic refining.
  • Leaching
    This is done to get copper sulphate solution.
  • Electrotwining
    The solution is treated in an electrolyctic process tank to get pure cathodes. Precious metals are extracted from the solution.
  • Smelting
    Melting and purifying stages result in 99% pure copper.
  • Electrolyctic refining
    Anodes cast from the nearly pure copper are immersed in an acid bath to build up into a cathode. Precious metals are extracted from the solution.
  • 99.9% pure cathode
    The pure cathode can be converted to wires, plates, tubes, rods, bars and so on.

The chart here shows production routes for the manufacture of copper and brass castings, semi-finished and finihed products.



Know why copper is favoured for applications over most metals ? Here's why....
  • Aesthetics
  • Bactericide
  • Bearing/ anti-galling properties
  • Biofouling resistance
  • Corrosion resistance
  • Ductility Ease of moulding
  • Environment friendly fungicide
  • Hardness
  • High electrical conductivity
  • Low temperature properties
  • Mechanical strength
  • Non-magnetic
  • Non-sparking
  • No oxide layer formations
  • Ozone proof
  • Resistance to hydrogen
  • Rust proof
  • Strength
  • Springiness
  • Thermal conductivity
  • Ultra-violet light resistance
  • Wear resistance