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Aluminium (or aluminum; see different endings) is a chemical element in the boron group with symbol Al and atomic number 13. It is a silvery-white, soft, nonmagnetic, ductile metal.

Aluminium is the third most abundant element (after oxygen and silicon) in the Earth's crust, and the most abundant metal there. It makes up about 8% by mass of the crust, though it is less common in the mantle below. Aluminium metal is so chemically reactive that native specimens are rare and limited to extreme reducing environments. Instead, it is found combined in over 270 different minerals. The chief ore of aluminium is bauxite.

Aluminium is remarkable for the metal's low density and for its ability to resist corrosion due to the phenomenon of passivation. Structural components made from aluminium and its alloys are vital to the aerospace industry and are important in other areas of transportation and structural materials.[clarification needed] The most useful compounds of aluminium, at least on a weight basis, are the oxides and sulfates.

Despite its prevalence in the environment, no known form of life uses aluminium salts metabolically. In keeping with its pervasiveness, aluminium is well tolerated by plants and animals. Owing to their prevalence, potential beneficial (or otherwise) biological roles of aluminium compounds are of continuing interest.

Aluminium. Characteristics[edit] "Red mud" storage facility in Stade, Germany.


The aluminium industry generates about 70 million tons of this waste annually. Physical[edit]


Production and refinement. Compounds. Applications. History. Effect on plants. Etymology. Biology. Health concerns. List of countries by aluminium production. The Aluminum Association. Pursuant to seven ANSI H35 standards, The Aluminum Association registers and publishes specifications describing the composition, mechanical properties and nomenclature of aluminum alloys in the United States.[6] These alloys are identified by the abbreviation "AA", for example AA 6061-T6.

The Aluminum Association

History[edit] In 1933, Congress passed the National Industrial Recovery Act (NIRA), a New Deal measure requesting each industry to establish codes and guidelines of fair competition. Representatives of 13 aluminum companies met in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to set up these codes and formed the Association of Manufacturers in the Aluminum Industry. Panel edge staining. Panel edge staining is a naturally occurring problem that occurs to anodized aluminium and stainless steel[1] paneling and facades.

Panel edge staining

Institute for the History of Aluminium. Beverage can. The stay-tab opening mechanism characteristic of most drinking cans since the mid-1980s.

Beverage can

The 'wide-mouth' version, seen here, was introduced in the late 1990s. A beverage can is a metal container designed to hold a fixed portion of liquid such as carbonated soft drinks, alcoholic beverages, fruit juices, teas, herbal teas, energy drinks, etc. Beverage cans are made of aluminium (75% of worldwide production)[1] or tin-plated steel (25% worldwide production). Worldwide production for all beverage cans is approximately 370 billion cans per year worldwide.[1] History[edit] Beginning in the 1930s, after an established history of success with storing food, metal cans were used to store beverages.

Canned beverages were factory-sealed and required a special opener tool in order to consume the contents. In the mid-1930s, some cans were developed with caps so that they could be opened and poured more like a bottle. A pull tab from the 1970s. Standard sizes[edit] Aluminium hydroxide. Nomenclature[edit] The naming for the different forms of aluminium hydroxide is ambiguous and there is no universal standard.

Aluminium hydroxide

All four polymorphisms have a chemical composition of aluminium trihydroxide (an aluminium atom attached to three hydroxide groups).[3] Gibbsite is also known as hydrargillite, named after the Greek words for water (hydra) and clay (argylles). The first compound named hydrargillite was thought to be aluminium hydroxide, but was later found to be aluminium phosphate; despite this, both gibbsite and hydrargillite are used to refer to the same polymorphism of aluminium hydroxide, with gibbsite used most commonly in the United States and hydrargillite used more often in Europe. In 1930 it was referred to as α-alumina trihydrate to contrast it with bayerite which was called β-alumina trihydrate (the alpha and beta designations were used to differentiate the more- and less-common forms respectively). Aluminium granules. Manufacture[edit] Granules versus powders[edit] Aluminium granules have been found safer and economical compared to atomized aluminium powder.

Aluminium granules

Aluminium foil. A sheet of aluminium foil Annual production of aluminium foil was approximately 800,000 tonnes (880,000 tons) in Europe[1] and 600,000 tonnes (660,000 tons) in the U.S. in 2003.[2] Approximately 75% of aluminium foil is used for packaging of foods, cosmetics, and chemical products, and 25% used for industrial applications (e.g. thermal insulation, cables and electronics).[2] In North America, aluminium foil is known as aluminum foil.

Aluminium foil

Aluminium–air battery. Aluminium–air batteries or Al–air batteries produce electricity from the reaction of oxygen in the air with aluminium.

Aluminium–air battery

They have one of the highest energy densities of all batteries, but they are not widely used because of problems with high anode cost and byproduct removal when using traditional electrolytes and this has restricted their use to mainly military applications. However, an electric vehicle with aluminium batteries has the potential for up to eight times the range of a lithium-ion battery with a significantly lower total weight.[1] Aluminium–air batteries are primary cells; i.e., non-rechargeable. Aluminium: The Thirteenth Element. Aluminium: The Thirteenth Element encyclopedia cover Aluminium: The Thirteenth Element is a Russian encyclopedia completely devoted to aluminium.

Aluminium: The Thirteenth Element

The encyclopedia is published by United Company RUSAL, at the end of 2007, in both Russian and English. Four thousand copies were printed (240 pages). The encyclopedia covers various areas of aluminium application, starting from car engineering and architecture to jewellery and fashion, recounts how this metal was discovered, and describes technologies of its production, its properties and benefits for various spheres of life. The book consists of 9 chapters, with an index/glossary and name index enclosed at the end.