Nickel is a ductile, hard, silvery white material. You rarely find it alone, but you will find as an alloy in a wide variety of different materials. It’s used in the coins we pay with, the tools we build with and many other stainless steel items, including household objects like magnets, batteries and ceramics. It can even be added to things like guitar strings and glass. And, of course, you’ll find it a number of different nickel alloy pipes, which is our favorite application!
The Benefits of Nickel Alloys
Okay, so nickel alloy is fairly ubiquitous material. But why? Well, it has a number of different characteristics that make it useful in a variety of environments. Some of them include:
- Resistance to Heat
Certain nickel alloys can withstand extremely high temperatures. Nickel-chromium alloys comprised of over 15% chromium have been known to endure temperatures exceeding 760 celsius. And copper nickel pipe is no slouch either when it come to heat resistance. The ability of nickel alloy to endure high temperatures makes it a desirable pipe choice in machinery or other structures that create intense heat.
- Resistance to corrosion
Oxidation reactions occur when metal encounters oxygen. It’s these reactions that cause corrosion. However, nickel has a slower rate of oxidation than most metals. This allows nickel alloy pipes to resist corrosion longer, especially in highly corrosive conditions like marine environments.
- Low Rate Of Expansion
Many nickel-iron alloys display a very low rate of thermal expansion or an extremely predictable rate of expansion. This makes nickel alloy pipes desirable in environments where you need a uniform size and shape despite high temperatures. For example, during moderate temperature increases, Iron-36% nickel almost doesn’t expand at all. And when cobalt is combined with nickel and iron, the resulting material not only has great strength, but also a constant modulus of elasticity and a low coefficient of expansion.
- Shape Memory
Sometimes, your project requires a material that can revert to its previous shape after it encounters heat. This type of material, a shape memory alloy, is extremely rare. But some nickel alloys have this useful property. For example, nickel-titanium alloy is one of the most important shape memory alloys.
- Magnetic Permeability
Nickel-iron alloys have unique magnetic permeability qualities. Consequently, they have become an important part in designs for switchgear and direct current motors and generators.
As you can see, nickel alloys have many advantages that make them desirable in a host of applications. Do you think a nickel alloy pipe would be right for your next project? We carry many types, including copper nickel pipe. Contact us to learn more.
We manufactures various pipes and fittings. If you are interested in our company, please feel free to contact us.
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