Copper has been used since ancient times. From its usage in electric wiring to roofing and plumbing, cookware, and motors, copper is found in widely applications. Read below for the interesting facts of copper.
1. Copper has the chemical symbol Cu and atomic number 29.
2. The word copper and its atomic symbol Cu are from the Latin word ’cuprum’ meaning ‘metal of Cyprus’, since the Ancient Romans mined much of their copper from Cyprus.
3. Copper has been used for more than 10,000 years.
4. Copper can be found in its native form, and is also found in many minerals, such as cuprite, malachite, azurite, chalcopyrite and bornite.
5. Most copper is mined or extracted from copper deposits that has only 0.4 to 1.0% copper.
6. Chile, China, Peru, and U.S. lead the mined copper production in the world.
7. Nearly 80% of the copper ever produced is still in use today.
8. Pure copper is red-orange in color. When exposed to air, it will gradually tarnish to a brownish color. If water is also present, a green coating will develop on it which is known as verdigris.
9. Copper combines with other metals to form alloys, brass and bronze are probaly the most familiar copper-base alloy.
10. Brass is used in many musical instruments for its malleability and its acoustic properties.
11. Only silver has a higher electrical conductivity than copper.
12. Copper cookware has the merits of high heat transfer and uniform heating.
13. Copper is a natural antibacterial. Brass doorknobs and handrails are often used in public buildings to prevent the transfer of bacteria. Copper sulfate is used to kill fungus and algae in lakes and ponds. Copper has been used to protect ships against biofouling for centuries.
14. Copper is an essential nutrient to almost all higher llife forms. It is crucial for forming red blood cells.
15. The composition of U.S. penny was pure copper from 1793 to 1837. Since 1982, it has been 97.5 percent zinc with a thin copper skin.
16. Copper is the third most recycled metal after iron and aluminium.
17. Copper is 100% recyclable without any loss of quality.
18. Recycling copper saves 85% of the energy used in extracting copper from copper ore.
19. Almost one half of the copper consumed in the U.S. is from recycled material.