Copper is the material for technological progress.  But copper is also the metal of the energy transition, powering renewable energy systems and green technologies and improving energy efficiency.

Copper has been in use for more than ten thousand years and has significantly shaped social and technical development during this time. But it is also crucial to the development of technologies that will not realise their full potential until well into the 21st century.

Due to its excellent electrical and thermal conductivity, but also because of its excellent workability and durability, copper is used in a wide range of applications and in many different industries such as automotive or mechanical engineering. However, this also includes areas such as telecommunications, architecture, conventional energies, plumbing, heating, transport, maritime applications, electrical engineering, aquaculture and of course renewable energies.

The wide range of applications for copper materials really leaves nothing to be desired: from superconductors made of high-tech fibres based on copper for the CERN particle accelerator to NASA rocket components made entirely of copper on the 3D printer – even the most innovative applications cannot be realised without copper.

From high-voltage power transmission to microelectronics, from gigawatt generators to PCs – in every aspect of energy generation, transmission and use, copper is generally recommended as a crucial and energy-efficient material. In the automotive industry, for example, copper alloys enable higher operating temperatures and performance for e-motors, generators and onboard networks.

Main applications for copper in Germany

Figures 2020

In 2020, it is estimated that around 57 % of copper applications went to the electrical sector, followed by the construction sector with 15 %. The automotive sector accounted for 9 %, while mechanical and plant engineering claimed 8 %. Trade and other followed with 5 and 6 % respectively (source: WVMetalle/GdB).

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