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Brass

zinc brasses alloy

Brass, alloy of copper and zinc, known since Roman times and widely used in industry and for ornament and decoration. Up to 36% zinc forms “alpha” α-brass, which can be worked cold; with more zinc a mixture of α and “beta”-brass is formed, which is less ductile but stronger. Brasses containing more than 45% zinc (white brasses) are unworkable and have few uses. Some brasses also contain other metals: lead for machinability, aluminum or tin for corrosion resistance, and nickel, manganese, or iron for strength.

See also: Alloy.

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