The uses of aluminum both in everyday life and in the industrial field are various, as it is used as an electrical conductor, for transporting and preserving food, and in the framework of buildings and other structures.
Aluminum is a light and resistant non-ferromagnetic metal, one of the most versatile elements that exist, and represents in a certain way the industrialization and modernism of the world, being vital in transport, construction, basic services and food.
It is the second most used metal in the world, only behind iron. Some 40 million tons of aluminum are produced annually.
Main uses of aluminum
Aluminum mining is a very expensive and energy-intensive process. However, this is offset by its high strength, low weight, good conduction of electricity and heat, resistance to corrosion and ease of molding, making it more economical in the long run than other metals.
It is very suitable for the creation of sheets and thin cables. Although it loses toughness when cast into a framework, it can be used for alloys with other elements such as copper, iron, zinc, or silicon, increasing its hardness.
1- Preparation of cutlery and kitchen tools
Perhaps the greatest of the everyday uses of aluminum is in the preparation and preservation of food. After stainless steel, it is the most used material for making knives, containers, pots and other kitchen implements.
Aluminum foil consists of extremely thin sheets (even less than 0.01 millimeter thick) that serve to wrap almost any material due to its malleability.
It is also heat resistant, which is why it is usually put into the oven in some preparations.
Most food and beverage cans are made from aluminum. Sauces, dressings, beer, juices, fish, vegetables, and cold cuts can be found in cans.
Packaging is not limited to food only, practically any material can be stored in aluminum containers for easy transport. Glue, paint, or insecticide can be named.
Due to its flexible and malleable nature, aluminum is suitable for supporting structures when properly combined with other components, as its price makes it a good base material.
All means of land, sea or air transport use aluminum to some degree, not only for external materials, but also for mechanical components.
The best example is that of airplanes, where aluminum is preferred due to its cost and relative low weight.
Despite not being the best conductor of electricity, aluminum has several advantages over other materials that are, such as silver, gold and copper, mainly its low cost and weight.
It is used for high voltage towers, where the power lines must be light, flexible and as economical as possible.
It also has high resistance to corrosion and is easy to weld, making electrical installations more durable and easy to repair.
Within industrial uses, lithography is one of those that uses aluminum the most, covering practically all its needs. In fact, the litho sheets, with which the plates are made, are made with an aluminum base.
Aluminum has become a powerful material when it comes to making household appliances such as refrigerators, stoves, washing machines, ovens or microwaves.
The reason is that this material is heat resistant, conducts well, is durable and is also very light. In turn, new aesthetic trends highly value the design of this type of technology made with aluminum.
8- Components for computers
Some components such as heat sinks to cool the CPU or graphics cards have aluminum as their main element.
In the case of heatsinks, the thermal and corrosive resistance of aluminum alloys make this material the best ally to keep computers in good thermal condition.
The nameplates that can be seen on mailboxes, trophies, desk tables, apartment doors or leather goods are usually made of aluminum. The reason is that aluminum is very malleable and etching is easy and efficient.
Many jewelry and costume jewelery products are made with aluminum because of how moldable it is. Being a cheap material, it helps these types of products, generally expensive, to reach a larger population.
Normally household keys are made of nickel and brass, but there are many that are made of aluminum, since they are cheaper and perfectly fulfill the function of opening or closing. They are usually keys destined for mailboxes, lockers or small boxes, in which the material value of what is inside is not high.
In turn, most of the key rings in which we carry the keys to the house, the car, the mailbox or the lockers are made of aluminum.
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