Science, Tech, Math › Science Physical Properties of Beryllium Copper Share Flipboard Email Print Guy Immega/Wikimedia Commons Science Chemistry Chemistry In Everyday Life Basics Chemical Laws Molecules Periodic Table Projects & Experiments Scientific Method Biochemistry Physical Chemistry Medical Chemistry Famous Chemists Activities for Kids Abbreviations & Acronyms Biology Physics Geology Astronomy Weather & Climate By Terence Bell University of British Columbia Carleton University Terence Bell wrote about commodities investing for The Balance, and has over 10 years experience in the rare earth and minor metal industries. our editorial process Twitter Twitter LinkedIn LinkedIn Terence Bell Updated January 06, 2020 Beryllium copper alloys are vital to many industries due to their unique combination of strength, hardness, conductivity, and resistance to corrosion. Standard beryllium copper alloys contain close to 2% beryllium, while the beryllium content in proprietary alloys can range from 1.5% to 2.7%. The standards in the chart below should be for reference only, as alloys can be subject to considerable variation depending upon conditions of heat treatment. For example, thermal and electrical conductivity can increase with precipitation hardening. It's also worth noting that the precipitation heat treatment that creates maximum hardness does not correspond with that which provides maximum conductivity. Physical Properties of Beryllium Copper Properties Measurement Density 8.25g/c30.298lb/in3 Coefficient of Thermal Expansion 17 x 10-6 per C9.5 x 10-6 per F Electrical ConductivitySolution heat-treatedHeat-treated to maximum hardnessHeat-treated to maximum conductivity 16% to 18% (IACS)20% to 25% (IACS)32% to 38% (IACS) Electrical Resistivity at 20°CSolution heat-treatedHeat-treated to maximum hardnessHeat-treated to maximum conductivity 9.5 to 10.8 microhm cm6.9 to 8.6 microhm cm4.6 to 5.4 microhm cm Temperature Coefficient of ElectricalResistance, from 0°C to 100°CHeat-treated to maximum conductivity 0.0013 per °C Thermal ConductivitySolution heat-treatedPrecipitation hardened 0.20 cal./cm2/cm./sec./°C0.25 cal./cm3/cm./sec./°C Specific Heat 0.1 Modulus of ElasticityTension (Young's modulus)Torsion (Bulk or shear modulus) 18 to 19 x 106lb./sq. inch6.5 to 7 x 106lb./sq. inch Temperature coefficient of elastic modulusTension, from -50°C to 50°CTorsion, from -50°C to 50°C -0.00035 per °C-0.00033 per °C Source: Copper Development Association. Pub 54. Beryllium Copper (1962). Uses of Beryllium Copper Alloys Beryllium copper is commonly used in electronic connectors, telecommunications products, computer components, and small springs. Take a close look at tools like wrenches, screwdrivers, and hammers used on oil rigs and coal mines, and you'll see that they have the letters BeCu on them. That indicates they are made of beryllium copper. That's important for workers in those industries because they need tools that are safe to use in those environments. For example, tools made from beryllium copper won't cause potentially deadly sparks. Beryllium copper alloys are so strong, they often find themselves in competition with steel. Beryllium copper alloys have advantages over steel, including higher resistance to corrosion. Beryllium copper is also a better conductor of heat and electricity. As noted above, beryllium copper won't spark, and this is another significant benefit the metal alloy has over steel. In potentially dangerous situations, beryllium copper tools can help reduce the risk of fire and injury. Learn About the Strength and Hardness of Beryllium-Copper Alloys Properties of Monel 400, a Nickel-Copper Alloy That Resists Corrosion Beryllium - Properties, History, and Applications A Basic Primer on Copper, the Red Metal, Properties, History, and More Properties, Composition and Production of Metal Alloys Learn About the Difference Between Types 304 and 304L Stainless Steel Copper Alloys List Learn About Atomic Number 4 Properties of Type 316 and 316L Stainless Steels Common Metal Alloys From A to Z Learn About the Properties, History, and Uses of Brass Metal The Properties and Applications of Ferritic Stainless Steel What Is Type 201 Stainless Steel? What Is Brass? Composition and Properties The Properties, History, and Multiple Applications of Steel What Are Monel Alloys? How Are They Used?