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Properties of Copper

Copper is a non ferrous reddish brown metal used for thousands of years by different cultures. Demand for copper is very high in domestic as well as international market, especially in industrial areas. Several forms of copper are transported to fabricators in the form of cathode, wire rod, billet, cake (slab) and ingot. Through various processes like extrusion, drawing, rolling, forging, melting, electrolysis or atomization, fabricators can form wire, rod, tube, sheet, plate, strip, castings, powder and other shapes. Finally, copper based alloys and copper are navigated to manufacturing plants that make products to meet society's needs and requirements. Several physical characteristics of copper are :

  • Ductility and malleability
  • High alloying features
  • Good electrical conductor of heat
  • Non magnetic in nature
  • Important nutrient for life
  • Higher resistance to corrosion
  • Outstanding heat transfer characteristics
  • Durable, machinable and recyclable

Some specific properties of copper includes :
Chemical Symbol
Atomic Number
Atomic Weight
8960 kg m(-3)
Melting Point
Specific Heat at 293K
Thermal Conductivity
394W m(-1) K(-1)
Electrical Conductivity (%International Annealed Copper Standard)
Electrical Resistivity
1.673x10(-8) ohm-m
Crystal Structure
Face Centered Cubic
Boiling Point
2,567 degrees C
Tensile strength
approx. 19,000 psi

Varieties of copper
  • Native copper: Cu – Red
  • Azurite: 2CuCO(3).Cu(OH)2 - Blue
  • Bornite: FeS.2CU(2)S.CuS - Red brown
  • Chalcopyrite: CuFeS(2) - Brass yellow
  • Enargite: 3Cu(2)S.As(2)S(5) - Gray black
  • Cuprite: Cu(2)O - Red
  • Malachite: CuCO(3).Cu(OH)2 -Green
  • Tetrahedrite: 4Cu(2)S.Sb(2)S(3) - Gray black

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