Nickel and Nickel Alloy Properties

Properties of Nickel

Nickel is a prominent metal used across numerous industries. It has good mechanical properties making it practical in a variety of settings. It is well known for its excellent resistant’s to many corrosive environments. Nickel products also maintain their strength at high temperatures due to their magnetic and thermal expansion properties. Due to these abundance of good qualities, nickel is used in several different alloys. Some of the most popular are stainless-steel alloys, nickel copper alloys, low expansion alloys, and magnetic alloys.   These alloys have a variety of day to day applications and uses dependent on their individual properties.


Due to nickels strength, anti-corrosion properties, and magnetic properties nickel alloys have an abundance of applications. The vast majority of stainless steel contains 8-10% nickel. In all of these cases it is the combination of chromium with the nickel that does the job. Stainless steels are useful due to their fire resistant qualities. Stainless steel is often used for every day products such as eating utensils, saucepans, and kitchen sinks.  Nickel copper alloys, also referred to as MONEL or NICORROS, are often used where a higher strength metal is required. Some examples of uses are in oil refining and marine applications where long term corrosion resistance is needed. Low expansion alloys have a low expansion coefficient and they are capable of maintaining that coefficient over a range of temperatures.  This is often used to create a sound glass to metal seal that will not crack due to different expansion rates between the two materials. An example of an application of low expansion alloys is wiring used in lamps. In applications requiring high magnetic permeability in order to reduce power requirements and generate a strong magnetic field magnetic alloys are used. Magnetic alloys are often 70-80% nickel. Such alloys are used in tape recorder heads and for magnetic shielding around precision cathode ray display devices. The nickel 200 alloy offered at Shanghai Metal Corporation (SMC) is commercially pure, 99.6% wrought nickel.  Its mechanical properties and excellent resistance to corrosive environments make it ideal for the handling of food, synthetic fibers, and caustic alkalies.  SMC also offers a nickel 201 alloy. It is the low- carbon version of nickel 200, making it particularly suitable for spinning and cold forming.  The most common applications for nickel 201 are electrical components, combustion boats, and plater bars.  Nickel has a variety of useful mechanical properties that are often used in addition to other metals to make them more resistant to corrosion, have magnetic features, and temperature resistance.