Yep. Aluminum is definitely a metal. In fact, it’s the most abundant metal in Earth’s crust. Not only that, but it’s the second most abundant material in Earth’s crust after silicon. And luckily for you, Tampa Steel and Supply has a huge inventory of quality aluminum to choose from.
Like most metals, however, aluminum is never found in nature in its pure form. That’s actually good news though because pure aluminum is so reactive that we’d hardly be able to use it for anything. The aluminum we encounter in our daily lives is typically an alloy of the metal, meaning it’s been combined with another element. When aluminum is combined with oxygen, it creates aluminum oxide, which gives the metal its corrosion resistant properties. Here are some more interesting tidbits about this highly versatile, widely used metallic element.
About 8.2 percent of the Earth’s crust is composed of aluminum, and when you consider how large our planet is, that’s pretty significant. We use aluminum to make everything from soda cans to rocket ships. You may even be holding aluminum right now if you’re reading this from your smartphone. Aluminum is also one of the most commonly used metals in construction. Because it is very lightweight, yet also very strong, aluminum is perfect for building skyscrapers.
Aluminum Is Highly Recyclable
Aluminum is one of the most easily recycled materials there is. According to the Aluminum Association, it can take as little as 60 days for the aluminum used in a can to return to grocery store shelves as a new can. That means your can of Diet Coke may have been a Mountain Dew just two months ago!
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, recycling aluminum only takes about 5 percent of the energy it takes to extract new aluminum ore from the Earth’s crust. That’s a lot of energy saved by recycling!
5 Interesting Facts About Aluminum
Just when you thought the world of aluminum couldn’t get more interesting; here are some more exciting facts about the metal:
- A thin layer of aluminum is placed on the glass to make mirrors.
- Aluminum is used to make synthetic rubies and sapphires used in lasers.
- About 41 million tons of aluminum are melted each year.
- The amount of energy needed to produce one unit of aluminum has decreased by 70 percent over the last 100 years.
- The top of the Washington Monument is capped with an 8.9-inch aluminum pyramid.
Tampa Steel & Supply Has the Quality Aluminum You Need
So as you’ve just learned, aluminum is not only a metal but a pretty nifty one at that. If you think this extremely versatile, durable, and recyclable metal is right for your next building project, Tampa Steel and Supply has you covered. For quality aluminum products, as well as a variety of other metals and accessories, give us a call today!