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John S.

Donaldson Technical Institute

THE UNIVERSITY OF TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO COURSE: MAPR 210D Materials and Processes Year 3/Semester 3 Project Non-ferrous alloys INSTRUCTOR: Mr. Asim Abdullah

SUBMITTED BY: Carlin Sylvester

DATE DUE: 4th July, 2011

Ferrous alloys are those within which iron is the prime constituent. Conversely, nonferrous alloys are alloys which contain very little or no iron or iron compounds. They are used in a wide variety of applications ranging from construction to medical devices. A nonferrous alloy consists of two or more materials, one of which must be a nonferrous metal. Many nonferrous metals can be used in alloys and are chosen for specific characteristics such as strength, magnetism, electrical properties, and corrosion resistance. In the following treatise, we shall attempt to gain additional insight into these remarkable materials including their various uses as well as their compositions.


It was stated previously that, a nonferrous alloy consists of two or more materials, of which one must be a nonferrous metal. Some of these include transition metals; Transition metals include zirconium, a silvery white metal; hafnium, a grayish metal; osmium, a blue-black metal; and tantalum, a rare, blue-gray metal. These metals are useful in many applications because of their versatility, high density, and tensile strength. For example, tantalum sheet metal is used frequently to create surgical instruments because it does not react with bodily fluids and is corrosion resistant. However, it should be noted that some nonferrous metals and nonferrous alloys are highly combustible and volatile, including powder zirconium, which must be stored under water for safety, and beryllium oxide, which is highly toxic if inhaled. Other more commonly known nonferrous metals include: Aluminium Molybdenum Copper Lead Tin Zinc Nickel Magnesium Titanium Tungsten Precious metals (gold, silver, platinum)


Nonferrous alloys are useful for applications requiring non-magnetic, lightweight, high strength compounds. Since nonferrous alloys have high melting points, they are also often used in electrical and electronic applications. For example, tungsten-carbide is an inorganic chemical compound containing equal parts of tungsten and carbon that is much denser than steel or titanium. It is commonly used as a machining tool where other tools would wear away, such as in high-quantity production runs. Carbide, as it is commonly known, generally produces a better finish on the part, and allows faster machining. Carbide tools can also withstand higher temperatures with a melting point of 2870 0C. Likewise, silicon carbide (SiC) is a compound of silicon and carbon most often used as an abrasive and more recently as a semiconductive material with a melting point of 2730 0C. Similarly, aluminium and zirconium can be combined to create aluminiumzirconium; a common ingredient used in anti-perspirants. Additionally, osmium reacts with oxygen at ambient temperatures to produce osmium tetroxide, a volatile catalyst which is used to hasten chemical reactions.


Light non-ferrous alloys


Composition (%)


Aircraft sheets Airframe structural parts Rivets Tubes


Copper-4.5 Manganese-0.7 Magnesium-0.7 Silicon-0.7 Aluminium-93.4

Light weight

Can be heat treated and age-hardened.

Alclad It is a duralumin sheet having coating of pure aluminium on each side Y-alloy Copper-4 Nickel-2 Magnesium-1.5 Aluminium-92.5

It has all the properties of duralumin with the resistance to corrosion of aluminium Resistant to corrosion and fatigue Withstands relatively high temperatures Can be heat treated and age-hardened Diecastings Cylinder heads Pistons Aircraft sheets Wing coverings

Aluminium bronze


It is a copperaluminium alloy

Pump-rods Used for nonsparking chisels


having high strength

Heavy non-ferrous alloys


Composition (%)

Good wearing Anti-friction properties


Pipe fittings Gauges Bearing bushes

Brass Zinc - 30

Corrosion resistant Good tensile strength

Phosphor bronze

Copper-89 Tin-10 Phosphorous-1


Resists corrosion by seawater Tough Melts at a low temperature when


White metal Naval brass Monel metal


Heavy duty bearings


bearing is overheated and prevents

Antimony-10 Copper 60 Zinc 39 Tin - 1

seizure Marine and engineering High strength Resists corrosion castings Condenser tubes Pump parts Motor boat shafts

Nickel-68 Copper-29 Iron-3

High corrosion resistance

Turbine blades Chemical and food-handling plants.


As with almost anything else, there are both upsides as well as downsides relating to the use of non-ferrous alloys.

Advantages Corrosion resistant. Light weight. High melting points. Most are highly dense. Extremely versatile. High electrical conductivities.

Disadvantages Because of their chemical reactivity with other materials at temperatures, they are costly to refine. Some are highly toxic. Not as commonly used as ferrous alloys due to the rarity of non-ferrous metals. Some experience rapid oxidation at elevated temperatures. Non-ferrous alloys are generally expensive. elevated

From the previous discourse, we have seen that there exists a wide range of possibilities with respect to the application of non-ferrous alloys. By combining them with other metals we can acquire whatever mechanical property and/or characteristic we so desire. However exciting this may seem, we should also take note that this range of possibility is ultimately linked to the availability of as well as the cost factor of nonferrous metals from which these alloys are created.

REFERENCES .html s_Alloys.pdf df&oq=non+ferrous+alloys&aq=9&aqi=g10&aql=undefined&gs_sm=c&gs_upl=80 35l8987l0l14l4l0l0 ous+alloys+dense&aq=f&aqi=&aql=undefined&gs_sm=e&gs_upl=8751l32897l0l 37l35l0l16l16l0l456l errous+alloys&oq=advnon+ferrous+alloys&aq=0b&aqi=gb1&aql=undefined&gs_sm=c&gs_upl=32 oys/nonferrous_metals_alloys