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Publication 91450

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The usefulness of metals in structural and other applications depends on their physical and chemical properties. Although iron is the most common metal used in manufacturing, it must be protected against corrosion because iron rusts easily. Copper is used in electrical wiring because it conducts electricity extremely well and resists corrosion better than many metals. Gold is a highly valuable jewelry metal because it is essentially unreactive. How can we determine the relative reactivity of different metals?