“COPPER AND COPPER
( PROPERTIES, EXTRACTION,
PRODUCTION, USES AND
MUHAMMAD NAVEED ALAM
MUHAMMAD EHSAN UL HAQ
AREAS OF DISCUSSION:
• INTRODUCTION TO COPPER (PHYSICAL PROPERTIES,
OCCURRENCE, DEPOSITS, ORES, PRODUCTION)
• MINING AND REFINING OF COPPER (EXTRACTION
• INTRODUCTION TO COPPER ALLOYS (CLASSIFICATION,
• IMPORTANT CLASSES OF COPPER ALLOYS (BRASSES,
BRONZES, SPECIAL ALLOYS)
• USES AND APPLICATIONS OF PURE COPPER AND
• Copper (Cu) atomic weight 63.546 is a soft, malleable
and ductile metal with very high thermal and electrical
conductivity from the group of Coinage metals in the
modern periodic table.
• There are 29 isotopes of copper. 63Cu and 65Cu are
stable, with 63Cu comprising approximately 69% of
naturally occurring copper. The other isotopes are
Reddish orange in
Face centered cubic
MODULUS OF ELASTICITY
HARDNESS AT MOHs SCALE
ORES OF COPPER:
OCCURRENCE OF COPPER:
• Copper is present in the Earth's crust at a concentration
of about 50 parts per million (ppm)
• Copper occurs as native copper or in mineral such as the
copper sulfides chalcopyrite and chalcocite, copper
carbonates azurite and malachite and the copper(I) oxide
• The largest mass of elemental copper discovered
weighed 420 tonnes and was found in 1857 on the
Keweenaw Peninsula in Michigan US.
• In Pakistan large copper deposits are discovered in Reko
Diq (Baluchistan) and Saindak town in Chagai District.
• The total amount of copper on Earth is vast i.e. around
1014 tons just in the top kilometer of Earth's crust.
EXTRACTION TECHNIQUES FOR COPPER
• Copper ore is mined both underground and on the surface.
Large excavations formed by surface mining are called
• Most of the copper ores mined today are oxide or sulfide
• HYDROMETALLURGICAL operations are required for
treating very poor grade oxide ores (LEACHING)
• PYROMETALLURGICAL treatments are given to the
sulphide ores for their smelting and roasting.
• ELECTROMETALLURGICAL techniques are employed
for the electro refining of blister copper or copper scrap.
EXTRACTION OF COPPER FROM
• Copper is extracted usually from the sulphide ore
chalcopyrite (CuFeS2) by smelting process.
• Ores containing 4% or more copper are treated by smelting
• There are following steps for the Pyrometallurgical
extraction of copper from Chalcopyrite.
CONCENTRATION BY FROTH
“Crushed ore is suspended in water containing pine
oil. The pine oil binds to the copper compounds, but
not to the unwanted rocky material. A blast of air is
passed through the suspension. The particles of ore
get wetted by oil and floats as a froth which is
skimmed. The gangue sinks to the bottom.”
The concentrated ore is roasted in the furnace in the
presence of oxygen. Sulphur is oxidized to SO2 and
impurities of arsenic and antimony are removed as
volatile oxides. The following reactions take place:
2CuFeS2 + O2
S + O2
Cu2S + 2FeS + SO2
4As + 3O2
4Sb + 3O2
Cu2S + O2
Cu2O + SO2
FeS + O2
FeO + SO2
The roasted ore is mixed with coke and silica sand (SiO2) and is
introduced into a blast furnace. The hot air is blasted and FeO is
converted into ferrous silicate (FeSiO3)
FeO + SiO2
Cu2O + FeS
Cu2S + FeO
FeSiO3 (slag) floats over the molten matte of copper.
The resulting product of smelting is the combination of copper sulfate
and iron sulfide called matte (Copper matte).
Copper metal is extracted from molten
matte through bessemerization . The
matte is introduced in to Bessemer
converter which uphold by tuyeres. The
air is blown through the molten matte.
Blast of air converts Cu 2S partly into
Cu2O which reacts with remaining
Cu2S to give molten copper.
2Cu2S + 3O2
2Cu2O + Cu2S
2Cu2O + 2SO2
6Cu + SO2
The product of Bessemerization is called as “Blister
Copper” because, as it solidifies, SO 2 hidden in it
escapes out producing blister on its surface.
REFINING OF BLISTER COPPER
• Blister copper is refined by electrolysis. The blister copper then
undergoes "fire refining.“
• Air and natural gas are blown through the copper to remove any
remaining sulfur and oxygen.
• The copper is cast into copper anodes and placed in an electrolytic
cell. Once charged, the pure copper collects on the cathode and is
removed as 99% pure.
• Blocks of blister copper are used as anodes and thin sheets of pure
copper act as cathodes. The cathode plates are coated with graphite
in order to remove depositing copper.
• The electrolyte is copper sulphate (CuSO4) mixed with a little
amount of H2SO4 to increase the electrical conductivity.
• Optimum potential difference is 1.3 volt for this electrolytic
ELECTROLYTIC TANK FOR REFINING
Fe(s) → Fe2+(aq) + 2e–
Zn(s) → Zn2+(aq) + 2e–
EXTRACTION OF PRECIOUS METALS
FROM ANODE SLUDGE
Impurities, such as Ag, Au, and Pt, are less easily oxidized than
Cu. These remain in metallic form and fall to the bottom of the
cell, forming “anode sludge” from which they can later be
recovered. The anode sludges from copper-refining cells provide
one fourth of U.S. silver production and about one eighth of U.S.
DESIGNATED OF ALLOYS
designated C16000 - C79999
forged,rolled,hot and cold work can be done
Leaded phosphor bronzes
Copper-phosphorus and coppersilver phosphorus alloys
Other copper-zinc alloys
Three digit xxx
UNS of five digits
Starts with C
designated C81300 - C99999
these alloys can be casted
Red and leaded red brasses
Yellow and leaded yellow brasses
Manganese bronzes and leaded
Silicon bronzes, silicon brasses
Tin bronzes and leaded tin bronzes
CLASSIFICATION OF COPPER ALLOYS
There are five different classification of copper alloys
Copper – Tin alloys
Copper – Aluminium alloys
Copper – Silicon alloys
Copper – Beryllium alloys
Copper – Zinc alloys
Copper – Lead alloys
Copper – Zinc alloys with
Tin and Aluminium
• Cupronickel (CuNi)
• Nickel silver (CuNi-Zn
• Copper content > 99.3%
Roughly classify into three categories
• Electrolytic tough pitch
This copper contains 99.9% Cu
with 0.045 O content
• Oxygen – free
Oxygen-free copper is produced
from electrorefined cathode copper which is melt and cast in
a reducing atmosphere of CO and N to prevent O.
• Phosphorus deoxidized
Phosphorus is sufficiently added
to produce phosphoruspentoxide P2O5
There are two Class of brass
• The alpha alloys
with less than 37% Zinc.
These alloys are ductile and
can be cold worked.
Families of Brass
• Cast alloy brasses
• Copper-Tin-Zinc alloys (red, semi-red
and yellow brasses)
• Cast Copper-Bismuth and CopperBismuth-Selenium alloys.
• Copper-Zinc-Silicon alloys (Silicon
brasses and bronzes)
• The alpha/beta or duplex
with 37-45% Zinc. These
alloys have limited cold
ductility and are typically
harder and stronger
• wrought alloy brasses
• Copper-Zinc alloys
• Copper-Zinc-Tin alloys (Tin brasses)
• Copper-Zinc-Lead alloys (Leaded
• Tin Bronzes
• Al Bronzes
• Silicon Bronzes
• Beryllium Bronzes
• Alloys of copper and tin
• Other Alloying Elements may also be present With
The Exception of Zinc
• Also called Phosphor bronzes
• Phosphorus content (0.01-0.5%)
• Tin Content (1-11%)
• High corrosion resistance , Toughness ,Low
coefficient of friction, free from seasonal cracking
• Alloys of Copper And Silicon
• Maximum Solubility In Alpha Phase is 5.3 and decrease with
• Alloys contains less than 5% Si are single Phased
• These are the Strongest of the work hard enable Copper
• Their Mechanical Properties are comparable to mild steel and
corrosion resistance is comparable to copper
• These are used for Tanks , pressure vessels , Marine
construction , hydrulic preassure lines
• Alloys of Al & Cu
• Maximum solubility of Al in α-solid solution is 9.5%
• Commercial Al bronzes contain (4-11%)Al
• Alloys containing up to 7.5% al are single phase, other are
• Other elements are also added intentionally e-g , Fe , Mn , Si
• Iron Increases strength , silicon improves machinability , Mn
improves sound casting
• Single phase Bronze show good cold working propertis along
with high corrosion resistance to water and atomsphere
• These are used for water condenser tubes,nuts , bolts,
corrosion resistance vessels ,and in marine application
• Alloys of Cu & Beryllium
• Maximum solubility in Alpha solid Solution is 2.1 % and
decreases to 0.25 % to room temperature
• It is increased by age hardening
• They have excellent formability ,high tensile strength , creep
resistance , high electrical conductivity
• These are used in diaphrames , surgical instrument ,bolts &
screws , firing pins , dies.
• Alloys of Cu & Ni , contains upto 30 % Ni
• Cupronickels Alloys are single phase alloys
• No heat treatment is required
• Properties are improved only by cold working
• They have high fatigue resistance , high corrosion &
erosion resistance toward sea water
• These are widely used in condenser , heat exchanger
tubes , coastal power plants
• Alloys of Cu-Ni-Zn
• Commercial Alloys are contain Cu (50-70%) , Ni (5-10%) , Zn
• If copper is more than 60 % these are single phased ,ductile &
easily workable at room temp.
• Addition of Zinc imparts silver-blue-white colour ,good
• These are Excellent base metals for plating with Cr ,Ni ,Ag
• These are used For Rivets, screws, Costume jewelry , name
plates & radio dials
COPPER AND COPPER ALLOYS
Approximately 65% of copper produced is used for electrical applications.
Power generation and transmission
generators, transformers, motors, busbars and cables provide and
deliverelectricity safely and efficiently to homes and businesses.
Electrical equipment - providing circuitry, wiring and contacts for PCs,
TVs and mobile phones.
Copper is used in the manufacturing of heatsinks.
In a microchip, copper is commonly used for what is known as the
'global interconnects' because of its good conductivity. These are the
wires that connect different sections of the chip together.
Cu-Ni 70-30 alloy is used in steam generators, heat exchangers,
coolers, condensers, tanks, pipework, valves and fittings in
electricity generation by Nuclear means
25% of all the copper produced is used in
The skin of STATUE Of LIBERTY is made
of 81.3 tones Cu.
Cu is used in roofs, flashings, gutters, downspouts,
domes, spires, vaults, wall cladding and building
Transport accounts for 7% of copper usage.
NUCLEAR WASTE is enclosed
in these containers having Cu
shell on it.
Automotives radiator is made of copper-brass
Bacteria will not grow on cu surface b/c it is BIOSTATIC.
Cu doorknobs are used by hospitals to reduce the transfer of
LEGIONNAIRE’S disease is suppressed by Cu tubing in air
Copper's naturally antimicrobial properties can be exploited in
hygienic surfaces for hospitals and healthcare facilities.
CuSO4 is used as a fungicides and as algae control in domestic
The burnished glow of copper radiates beauty and warmth the
The remaining 3% is used for coins, sculptures, musical instruments
Cu-alloy is used in Bullets making.
One eurocent coin:
10 eurocent coin:
Cupro Nikle alloys