The copper element plays a vital role in shaping our lives. People have been using copper since 9000 BC. One of the reasons copper is so important is that it can be made into alloys. That means it can be combined with other metals to make new copper alloys, like brass and bronze. These are harder, stronger and more corrosion resistant than pure copper.
Nowadays the copper metal is prized for different qualities. It has excellent heat and electrical conductivity; it is strong, ductile and easily joined by soldering or brazing; and it is hygienic, easy to alloy and resists corrosion.
Copper is all over the place. In your home it is hidden away in everyday objects, including phones, water pipes, locks and electric wiring. You can take a virtual tour of a house which shows you the many copper uses in everyday life, inside and outside the home.
Click to enlarge. "The Wonder of Copper" poster, courtesy of CDA Inc.
• an excellent electrical conductor
• an excellent thermal conductor
• corrosion resistant
• easily joined
• attractive colour
• easy to alloy