Difference Between Aluminum Wire and Copper Wire (With Table)

Wires are the conductors that are used to conduct electricity or electron flow. Both magnetic and nonmagnetic metals are conductors, but nonmagnetic metals are considered to be the best. Several metals are being used in the industries for this purpose, but the most used metals are Aluminum and Copper. Both Aluminum and Copper Wire are being used for a very long duration, and both of them have different properties.

Aluminum Wire vs Copper Wire

The main difference between Aluminum Wire and Copper Wire is that both have different properties, and this is because of their respective metal. It has a different weight, cost, conductivity, ductility, tensile, color, temperature resistance, and many more. Aluminum Wires are much cheaper, have less conductivity, ductile and tensile, are lighter, and are corrosive as compared to Copper Wires.

Aluminum Wires are more economical, and the lighter wire which increases its usage. Although the Aluminum Wire cannot be used at every place due to the corrosive nature. And it is slightly difficult to make wire out of the Aluminum due to its less tensile and ductile nature.

Copper Wires can be easily made out of copper as it is more ductile and tensile and also can be used at more places, even at high temperatures, but the only disadvantage it has is its price and its weight. Copper Wire is no economical. They are really expensive and are heavier in weight.

Comparison Table Between Aluminum Wire and Copper Wire

Parameters of ComparisonAluminum WireCopper Wire
ConductivityIt is comparatively lesser in conductivity.It is Higher in Conductivity.
WeightIt is LighterIt is Comparatively heavier.
Temperature ResistanceIt Expands at High Temperature and opposite at Low temperature.It Can resist the effect of Thermal Changes.
CostIt is comparatively Less Expensive.It is More Expensive
Ductile and Tensile strength It is comparatively Less Ductile and Tensile.It is More Ductile and Tensile

What is Aluminum Wire?

Aluminum or Aluminium Wires are one of the most used wires dues to their properties and usage.

Features of Aluminum Wires:

  1. The Molecular weight of the wire 26.98
  2. The appearance of the wire is silvery.
  3. The melting point of the wire is 660.37 °C
  4. The Boiling point of the wire is 2467 °C
  5. The density of the Wire is 2700 kg/m3
  6. The Tensile Strength is 6800 psi Coldroled 16,000 psi.
  7. The Thermal Conductivity of the Wire is 2.37 W/cm/ K @ 298.2 K

The Advantages of Aluminum Wire are:

  1. Light Weight: one of the main advantages of aluminum wires is their lightweight, which is 2.7 g/cm3, which reduces is costs in manufacturing. This also helps in using it in vehicles that leads to less noise and increase comfort level too.
  2. Ductile:  Aluminum is a Ductile that means it can be drawn in thin sheets or wires without much difficulty. For example, aluminum foils are used in every household for several purposes.
  3. Impermeable: Aluminum is odorless and impermeable, making it the best for packaging edible and sensitive things.
  4. Nonmagnetic Metal: Nonmagnetic metals are generally considered to be the best conductor, and aluminum is one of those metals.
  5. Reuse: aluminum is a metal that is recycled and can be reused multiple times.

What is Copper Wire?

Copper Wires are the best type of conductors due to their great features and several advantages.

Feature of Copper Wires are:

  1. The Molecular weight of the wire 63.55
  2. The appearance of the wire is Reddish.
  3. The melting point of the wire is 1085 °C
  4. The boiling point of the wire is 2562 °C
  5. The density of the Wire is 8.96 g/cm3
  6. The Thermal Conductivity of the Wire is 401 W ·m-1 ·K-1.

Advantages:

  1. Electricity Conductivity: it is best when it comes to the electric conductors, due to which it best for using for cables and transformers.
  2. Thermal Conductor: it is also a good thermal conductor, due to which it is used for ACs, heat sealing machines and television, or anything where thermal power is very high.
  3. Non-corrosive: copper is considered ideal because it is non-corrosive, which means it doesn’t react, making it perfect for pipes, jewelry, radiators, statues, and many more.
  4. Ductile: it is more ductile as well as more tensile than the aluminum wires.

Although despite all these advantages the main disadvantage it has is that it is heavier and very expensive.

Main Differences Between Aluminum Wire and Copper Wire

  1. The Aluminum wire is made of aluminum, and the copper wire is made of copper. Therefore both of them have different properties of their respective metal.
  2. The Aluminum wire is relatively less conductive (only 60% of copper), whereas Copper wires have higher conductivity.
  3. The Aluminum wires are lighter and easy to carry, whereas Copper wires are heavier and difficult to carry.
  4. The Aluminum wires have the property of expanding at a high temperature and contracting in low temperature, whereas no such changes take place in the copper wire. It can resist the effect of Thermal Changes.
  5. When it comes to ductility, aluminum wires are less ductile, whereas copper wires are more ductile.
  6. The Aluminum Wires are less expensive, and the Copper Wires and more expensive in comparison.
  7. The Aluminum Wires are less Tensile, and Copper Wires are more Tensile.
  8. The Aluminum Wires can cause fire due to their corrosive nature, but no such mishappening takes place with the Copper Wires.

Conclusion

Therefore it is very much clear the different properties of both the Aluminum and the Copper Wire. If wiring is required at home, copper wires are ideal for it as they will resist the thermal effect and have more advantages, but in comparison to aluminum wires that are considered to be corrosive and lead to a fire. Therefore most people prefer copper wiring, especially for their home.

And except these platinum wires, gold wires, silver wires, and iron wires are the wires used by many. But the best among them remains the Aluminum and the Copper Wires.

References

  1. https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/abstract/document/6826706/
  2. https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/abstract/document/1218233/
  3. https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/abstract/document/5699519/
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