Copper

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Copper is one of the earliest elements known to man. Because of its distinct red color, Copper is very easily identified.In the ancient times, copper could be found lying in the ground in its unattached state without interaction to other substances. Copper and its compounds have many uses in todays society.
Copper has many chemical properties that make it unique. The Atomic number of copper is 29. An Atomic number is a measure of the amount of protons in the nucleus of an atom. Protons are sub-atomic particles, which have a positive charge. The Atomic mass of copper is 63.546. The Atomic mass is a measure of how many neutrons and protons are in an atom. Neutrons are sub- atomic particles, which have no charge. Thus, using the Atomic mass and Atomic number of Copper, we can determine that it has 29 proton and 35 neutrons.
Copper is a transition element and is found in column eleven of the periodic table. That means that it has 11 electrons in it valence shell. A valence shell of an atom is the last shell of electrons.Copper is a metal, which lies in period 4 of the Periodic table.

Other basic properties include having a density of 8.96grams/ centimeters3.Density is a measure of mass per unit of volume in a substance. Copper has a melting point of 1083.3 degrees Celsius. A melting point of a substance is the temperature at which a solid changes to a liquid. Also, the freezing point of Copper is 2567 degrees Celsius. The freezing point of substance is the temperature a liquid changes to a solid.

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There are also many physical properties of Copper including conductivity, malleability, ductility, and the resistance against corrosion. Conductivity is the ability to conduct electricity. Silver is the only better conductor of electricity, but it is too expensive. Pure copper is a better conductor of electricity than copper alloys, due to the impurities in the alloys. Copper is also
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very malleable. Malleability is the ability to be easily shaped. Copper doesnt break when hammered, stamped, forged, or spun into unusual shapes. Copper can be shaped either in a hot or cold shape.Besides being easily shaped, Copper is dutiable.Ductility is the ability to be drawn into thin wires without breaking. When heated, Copper becomes very thin and can be put into a wire thinner than a human hair.
This metal also has the ability to resist corrosion. Copper does not rust and when in water, it turns reddish orange. After prolonged exposure, Copper develops a coat of green film called patina. This film protects it against further exposure.Also, rolled Copper has a tensile strength from 50,000 to 70,000 pounds per square inch. Tensile strength is the maximum strength a material can stand before breaking.

Early uses of the element include jewelry, weapons, and tools. The element was first used around 9000 b.c.e. and was found in northern Iraq. Copper was first used by Native Americans around 2500 b.c.e.One of the first skills that the ancient coppersmith must have learned how to do was shape the metal, possibly by heating. This element was first used to its full potential when Coppersmiths began to use tin with copper to make an alloy called bronze. An alloy is a mixture of two or more metals with properties differs from those of the individual metal. The alloy was first discovered as early as 4000 b.c.e.Bronze was used similar to copper due to the many variety of tools, weapons, and jewelry that are created from the alloy. It differs from copper in the way that with tin added, the alloy is a better conductor and easier to shape than the metal alone. Copper was used as the primary metal of the world to around 3000 b.c.e when society discovered iron. Many copper compounds are used in todays agricultural, medical, and pest-control jobs. Copper Acetate (Cu20 (C2H3O2) 2) is a common insecticide, which is used
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to kills insects and fungicide, which is used to kill fungus. This compound has a low health risk (1) (OSHA). Copper chromate (CuCrO4 2CuO) is a fungicide, which is used in the treatment of seeds.Also, Copper-8-quinolinate (Cu (C9H6ON) 2) is used to protect fabric from mildew. Other common uses of copper compounds are found in battery fluid, fabric dye, food additives, and fire retardant material among other things.Contact with many of these compounds can be sickly, since many insecticide and fungicide products are toxic.

Copper is essential to life. Without copper, producing enzymes would not be possible.An enzyme is a substance, which stimulates certain chemical reactions in the body. Chemical reactions could not occur quickly enough without enzymes. Animals use copper in the building of blood vessels, tendons, nerves, and bones. While over amounts of copper in the body is rare, there is a disease where people cannot eliminate copper from their bodies. When someone has Witsons disease, the amount of copper in the body continually grows and affects the brain, liver, and kidneys. This is a treatable illness though through drug therapy using copper eliminating protein.

Some organisms also use copper in their blood. In animals there are two types of blood: hemoglobin and hemocyranin. Hemoglobin is what humans use. It carries red blood through the body and gets its red color from the iron. The other substance, hemocryanin is the same as hemoglobin, except it uses copper instead of iron. Thus it has a blue color, instead of red. Examples of animals, which have hemocryanin, are crustaceans.
Copper is very numerous in nature. The metal ranks in the upper quarter of elements abundant in the earths crust.A small part can also be found in seawater. Copper is minded
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throughout the world; fifty nations mine it today. Some include Albania, Argentina, Peru, Russia, Zambia, and many more. The largest miners of copper are Chile and the United States.Other major producers include Canada, Australia, and Indonesia. Within the United States, the leading states of production include, Arizona, Utah, Montana, and Nevada.
Copper is essential to modern society. Its uses are numerous and essential to many animals.Since the discovery of Copper, it has been an integral part of industry, art, and agriculture.Todays uses would not be possible if not for the discoveries many, many years ago.
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