CHARLES D. WINTERS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY CHARLES D. WINTERS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Aluminium. Cube of aluminium, a metal used in construction, household items, engines and electrical conductors. Aluminium is a silvery transition metal which is useful because it is light and corrosion resistant. The metal resists corrosion because it quickly forms a tough, transparent layer of aluminium oxide on its surface which protects the metal underneath. Aluminium is the most abundant metal in the earth's crust but was not isolated until 1825 by the Danish chemist Hans Christian Oersted. The metal has the chemical symbol Al.
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