Why Is Copper Important

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Copper is an element and a mineral important to our everyday lives. Because copper is stable, it can be used in jewelry, coins, wiring, and statues. It’s one of the well-known metals due to its reddish brown metallic color. Because copper has high ductility, malleability, thermal and electrical conductivity, and resistance to corrosion, it is a major industrial metal. Copper is one of the oldest metals, dating back more than 10,000 years ago. In ancient Egypt, many used everyday items created of copper. It can be found in items such as water vessels, razors, and the chisels used to smooth limestone blocks of the Great Pyramids. In agriculture, copper was used to make hoes and picks to harvest the crops. Early local traders depended on copper and its alloys for coins. Today, coins are used worldwide. The penny’s surface displays the copper that has been used to create the coin. However, did you know that todays penny only contains 2.5% of copper.…show more content…
Sometimes, copper is called a “noble” metal due to its electron arrangement. Copper’s 29 electrons have a configuration of 1s22s22p63s23p63d104s1. This provides copper with a stable arrangement for its electrons. The outermost electrons are tangled in metallic bonds. A metallic bond is formed when atoms in metals lose electrons to form cations. Delocalized electrons surround the ions. The metallic bonds provide copper metal its conductivity, hardness, and strength. The element copper undergoes oxidation when exposed to air. Copper has a blue-green oxidized surface. The Statue of Liberty is a prime example of oxidized copper. The oxidized surface consists of insoluble ionic compounds of copper (II) oxide and copper (II) carbonate. In class, we did an experiment with where we changed copper into its different states. For example, we added sodium hydroxide to copper (II) nitrate. We turned the copper into a
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