As an all-under-one-roof metal fabricator, steel may make up the bulk of what EVS Metal uses to fabricate parts and products, but aluminum plays an important part in our business as well. Last week, we covered some of the basics of aluminum — what it is, where it comes from, and how it’s different than stainless steel. Today, we’ll look at the lighter side of this metal (pun intended), showcasing some fun facts about this oft-taken-for-granted metal.
- …is one of the most abundant metallic elements in the Earth’s crust; it’s second only to silicon.
- …employs a LOT of people, including 29K in the U.S. alone
- …is plentiful. In 2014, the US. produced 1.72 million metric tons of primary aluminum, 1.7 million tons of secondary aluminum from used scrap (recyclables), and another 1.92 million tons from new scrap (usually that which is left over post-fabrication and manufacturing of a part or product).
- ….production in the U.S. has declined over the last three decades, but it is mainly primary aluminum production that has decreased. A portion of that has been made up by the production of secondary aluminum, allowing for its reuse.
- …has a tendency to stick around, thanks to recycling. According to the Aluminum Association, it’s believed that up to 75% of the aluminum ever produced is still out there in some form or another.
- …is strong, but also quite light, and weighs ⅔ less than steel. In fact, just four six-packs of aluminum cans can support the weight of a two-ton vehicle.
- …in its powdered form, is one of the primary materials used to make fireworks.
- …contains properties that make it a fantastic barrier material, and is able to lock out a range of potential contaminants, from light and oxygen, to moisture and even bacteria.
- …is easily recycled, but only about 55% of aluminum cans never make it to a recycling center. This is a shame, because it takes 95% less energy to recycle it into secondary aluminum than it does to produce new, or primary, aluminum.
- …has an incredibly high rate of thermal conductivity. In fact, its rate of heat transfer is around six times higher than that of stainless steel.
- Aluminum can be recycled with no loss of its intrinsic qualities.
- Ever wonder what etch-a-sketches are drawing with? That’s aluminum powder!
About EVS Metal
EVS Metal is an American precision metal fabricator headquartered in Riverdale, NJ. We utilize the latest technology to cut, bend, weld and finish stand-alone items as well as parts for integration or assembly into more complex products. Our four ISO 9001:2015-certified metal fabrication facilities comprise over 250,000 square feet of vertically-integrated manufacturing space and feature the most modern equipment available, from welding robots and laser cutting solutions to automated powder coating lines.
We serve a diverse customer base across North America, providing a range of services from ITAR-compliant, quick-turn prototypes to high-volume production runs. Request a personalized metal fabrication quote online, or call (973) 839-4432 to speak with a specialist today.