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An alloy is a of

two or more elements with a certain

composition in which the major

component is a
metal .
Pure are

weak and soft because the

arrangement of atoms in pure metals

makes them
Pure Metal
A pure metal contains atoms of the

same size arranged in a

regular and
Arrangement of Atoms in a Pure Metal
Weakness of Pure
Orderly arrangement


Layers of atoms sliding over each other easily

Ductile Drawn to form long wires


Existing empty

Hammered Metal atoms

& pressed slide into new

Malleability Made into different shape & pressed into thin sheet
The Making of
1 ST*

one or more foreign elements

are added to molten metal.
2 nd*

When alloy harden, the position of

some of the metal atoms are replaced
by atoms of foreign element.
( bigger size )
3 * rd
They disrupt the orderly
arrangement of metal atoms and
fill up the empty space .
4 th*

The layers of metal atoms are

prevented from sliding over each
other easily.
This process makes the alloy
harder and stronger, less
ductile and less malleable than
its pure metals.
Three aims of alloying
a pure metal:
 To increase the hardness n strength of a
 To prevent corrosion or rusting.
 To improve the appearance of metal
surfaces, with a better finish and lustre.
Aims of
To increase the hardness
and strength
Alloying improves the hardness and strength
of a metal.
 The addition of a little carbon to iron metal produces
steel which is a very hard alloy of iron.
 The addition of magnesium to aluminium metal produces an
alloy called magnalium. Magnalium is harder than aluminium
but still retains the low density of aluminium metal.
 The addition of tin to copper metal produces bronze.
Bronze is an alloy harder than both tin and copper.
To prevent corrosion
Pure metals such as tin and iron are easily
corroded in damp, polluted or acidic air.
 The addition of carbon, nickel and chromium to iron metal
produce stainless steel. Stainless steel is an alloy which can
resist rusting. The chromium and nickel form chromium(III)
oxide and nickel(IV) oxide which prevents the iron from rusting.
 The addition of tin to copper produces bronze which is able to
resist corrosion and tarnish.
To improve the appearance
Metals are easily tarnished because of the
formation of metal oxides on the metal
surfaces. The process of alloying can maintain
the lustre on the surface of the metal.
 Stainless steel is more shiny than pure iron.
 Adding a little copper and antimony to tin produces the alloy
pewter which is harder and shinier, and not so easily tarnished.
 Alloy wheels made from aluminium and other elements improve
the look of vehicles.
Experiment 9.1
To compare the hardness of a pure metal and its
Problem statement: Are alloys harder than pure metals?

Bronze is harder than copper. When a weight is dropped onto a ball bearing
placed on a metal block made of copper or bronze, a larger dent will be produced
on the softer copper metal block than on the bronze block.

(a) Manipulated: Types of materials (copper or bronze) to make the metal block
(b) Responding: Diameter of the dent made by a steel ball bearing
(c) Constant: Size of steel ball bearing, mass of weight used, height from which
it is dropped

Copper block, bronze block, ball bearing, 1 kg weight, metre ruler, retort stand with
clamp, cellophane tape and thread.
1. A metre ruler is clamped to a retirt stand, and a piece of
copper bock is placed on the base of the retort stand.
2. A steel ball bearing is placed on the copper block and a
piece of cellphane tape is used to hold the ball bearing in
3. A 1kg weight is hung at a height of 50 cm above the
copper block.
4. The weight is dropped onto the ball bearing placed on the
copper block.
5. The diameter of the dent made by the ball bearing is
6. The experiment is repeated three times using different
areas on the surface of the copper block.
7. The average diameter of the dent is calculated.
8. Steps 1 to 7 is repeated using a piece of bronze block.
Metal Diameter of the dent (mm)
Block I II III Average

Copper 3.2 3.3 3.2 3.23

Bronze 2.4 2.5 2.5 2.47
1) The bigger the average diameter of the dents produced by the steel ball
bearing on the metal means that it has been pressed deeper into the metal
2) Thus copper is softer than bronze because the steel ball bearing has been
pressed deeper into the surface of copper metal than that of bronze.
3) Bronze is a type of alloy formed from copper and tin. The tin atoms are larger
than the copper atoms. They distort the orderly structure of the copper
atoms so that the layers of copper atoms can no longer slide easily over one
another. This makes bronze harder than copper.
1) The average diameter of the dents made by the
steel ball bearing on the copper block is bigger
than that on the bronze block.
2) Hence, bronze, a type of alloy, is harder than pure
copper metal. The hypothesis is accepted.
Experiment 9.2
To compare the rate of rusting of iron, steel and
stainless steel.
Problem statement:
How does the rate of rusting of iron, steel and stainless steel differ?

Iron rusts faster than steel, and steel rusts faster than stainless steel.

(a) Manipulated: Different types of nails
(b) Responding: Intensity and amount of blue colour
(c) Controlled: Size of nails, concentration of solutions used, duration for rusting

Iron nail, steel nail, stainless steel nail, jelly solution, potassium
hexacynoferrate(III) solution, water, sandpaper.

Apparatus: Test tubes, test tube rack.


1) The nails are rubbed using sandpaper to remove the rust

from the surfaces of the nails.
2) The iron nail is placed in test tube A, the steel nail in test
tube B and the stainless steel nail in test tube C.
3) A 5% jelly solution is prepared by adding 5g of jelly into
100cm³ of boiling water. A few drops of potassium
hexacyanoferrate(III) solution are then added to the
jelly solution.
4) The hot jelly solution is poured into the three test tubes
until all the nails are fully immersed.
5) The test tubes are placed in a test tube rack and left
aside for three days. The intensity of the blue colour is
6) All observations are recorded in the table below.

Test tube Intensity of blue colour Inference

A Very high Rusting occurs very fast.

B Low Rusting occurs slowly.

C Nil No rusting occers.

Conclusion: The hypothesis is accepted.

The composition, Properties
and Uses of Some Common
Alloy Compositi Propertie Uses
on s
Carbon Steel 99% iron Hard and strong Frameworks of buildings and
1% carbon bridges
In the making of tools,
framework of heavy machinery
and body of vehicles.
Stainless steel 74% iron Shiny, strong and In the making of cutlery and
18% chromium resists rusting kitchenware
8% nickel In the making of machine parts
and surgical instruments

Bronze 90% copper Hard, strong and In the making of kitchenware
10% tin shiny and ships’ propellers
In the making of decorative
ornaments, status and art crafts

Brass 70% copper Hard and shiny In the making of electrical
30% zinc connectors and musical
In the making of kitchenware
and decorative ornaments
Magnalium 70% aluminium Light, hard and In the making of aircraft body
30% magnesium strong frames
In the making of rims of racing
car tires
Duralumin 95% aluminium Light, hard and In the making of the bodies of
3% copper strong aircrafts and bullet trains
1% magnesium In the making of racing

1% manganese bicycles, fan blades, light

electrical cable

Pewter 97% tin Lustrous and In the making of mugs,

3% copper and strong candlesticks, decorative
antimony ornaments and souvenirs

Solder 50% tin Hard, shiny and In the making of solder for
50% lead with low melting electrical wires and metal pipes

Cupro-nickel Copper, nickel Hard, shiny and To make coins of 10 sen, 20
(percentage resists corrosion sen, 50 sen
according to colour)