Alloys are metallic compounds made by melting two or more elements together. One of these elements will always be a metal and the others may be made up of non-metal elements. Even if an alloy contains non-metallic elements, it retains the properties of metal. The alloy compound is considered cognate or homogeneous which means the components cannot be separated by physical means.
What are common alloys, and where are they found?
Some common alloys that you may have right in your own home or business are as follows:
- Steel – A combination of iron and carbon.
Steel can be found in automobiles, food packaging, and home furnishings. It’s also commonly used in large industrial projects such as commercial buildings, bridges, and pipelines.
- Stainless Steel – An iron alloy, which usually contains chromium or nickel.
Stainless steel is a carbon steel which is prevalent within kitchens including countertops, pots and pans, and silverware.
- Aluminum – Can be a combination of iron, magnesium, silicon, copper, or zinc.
Aluminum is found in door and window frames, cans, kitchen utensils, and even airplanes.
- Brass – A combination of copper and zinc.
Brass is often found in door handles, bathroom fixtures, keys, faucets, musical instruments, or tools.
- Pewter – Includes tin and other elements such as lead or copper.
Pewter can be found in lots of decorative items such as candlesticks, utensils, dinner platters, or desk accessories.
- Sterling Silver – 92.5% silver including copper and other metals.
Sterling silver can be commonly found in jewelry and silverware.
- 18K Gold – 75% gold, and other elements commonly include copper, zinc, or nickel.
18K gold is typically found in solid or plated jewelry.
- Bronze – A combination of copper and tin.
Bronze can be found in jewelry, musical instruments, industrial castings, sculptures, and tools.
Can Alloys be Recycled?
Now that we have a rundown of alloys, their properties, and where to find them, we’ll discuss which alloys are recyclable in our next blog post.
Learn more about alloys:
Does your business create alloy scrap metal?
Scrap metal is highly valuable in today’s market. Consolidated Resources Inc can help you maximize the value of your scrap. Give us a call at (623) 931-5009 and we’ll create a custom recycling program that optimizes your waste stream.