Science Challenge Result # 2 - What is Aluminium Oxide
Aluminium is one of the most reactive metal that exists on the planet and yet we make cans out of it for drinking purposes. Want to know why Aluminium fizzy drink cans do not explode on our face?
A brief abstract of Aluminium
Aluminium is the most abundant metal on our Earth. 7% of the Earth’s crust is made out of this metal. It is one of the lightest but among the strongest. Being 13th on the reactivity series, it is surprising that it does not rust. There is a reason for that.
Since Aluminium can be easily molded to make cans and does not react with the corrosive nature of beverages, it has been used for making cans since 1985.
Thank you Aluminium Oxide
Aluminium is reactive in normal atmosphere and does not require any catalyst to reach its activation energy. It is the 13th most reactive metal and yet it is able to withstand the corrosive nature of fizzy drinks. Why is that?
When Aluminium reacts with the Oxygen in the air, Aluminium Oxide(Al2O3) is formed. A thin layer of Aluminium Oxide covers the surface of the Aluminium metal. This layer is a very stable compound. It does not react with the air and reduces drastically the electrical conductivity of Aluminium.
Without this layer of Aluminium Oxide, Aluminium would have been explosive in the air.
The right answer for the question “What is Aluminium Oxide?” is A - It is the protective layer formed on Aluminium metal.
The post payout is in some 12 hours but we already have the winners (16 in total):
@sultnpapper , @alxmuh , @drishitmitra , @dcardozo25 , @royaleagle , @mulyadi.alwi , @rayne122 , @mental-extract , @ailenepm , @dexterdev , @nihalmaz , @toastymagoo , @lifeplus1 , @cobmaximus , @cowceratops , @neokuduk
Congratulations to all the winners!!!
Properties of Aluminium Oxide
- Very good electrical insulation (1x 1014 to 1x1015 Ωcm)
- Very high compressive strength (2,000 to 4,000 MPa)
- Moderate to extremely high mechanical strength (300 to 630 MPa)
- Moderate thermal conductivity (20 to 30 W/mK)
- High hardness (15 to 19 GPa)
- Good gliding properties
- Operating temperature without mechanical load 1,000 to 1,500°C.
- High corrosion and wear resistance
- Low density (3.75 to 3.95 g/cm3)
- Bioinert and food compatible
Uses of Aluminium Oxide
Apart from protecting Aluminium metal, Aluminium Oxide has many other uses as we are about to discover. Examples of applications for aluminum oxide Al2O3 advanced ceramics are heavy-duty forming tools, substrates and resistor cores in the electronics industry, tiles for wear protection and ballistics, thread guides in textile engineering, seal and regulator discs for water taps and valves, heat-sinks for lighting systems, protection tubes in thermal processes or catalyst carriers for the chemicals industry.
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The next science quiz will be out tomorrow in some 12 hours so stay tuned if you want to participate in the lazy Saturday contest.
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