Properties of Aluminum Cans

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Aluminum cans are an eco-friendly means of packaging
Aluminum cans are an eco-friendly means of packaging (Image: Aluminum cans on end image by Jeffrey Studio from Fotolia.com)

Aluminum cans are a ubiquitous feature in grocery stores, used as a replacement for glass bottles as a container for beverages from soda to beer. How did aluminum cans become so popular? It's due to the unique properties of aluminum cans, which make them a safe, cheap and eco-friendly way to have a drink.

Recyclable

The biggest benefit of aluminum cans is that they're highly recyclable. Nearly 100 percent of the aluminum used in a can can be melted down and used again. The time-frame for recycling is quick, too -- oftentimes a recycled can will be back on the shelf in less than 90 days.

Strength

The aluminum used in cans is often stretched to a width of less than 1/10th of an inch thick. Despite the small amount of material used, cans as still highly durable and difficult to penetrate, particularly at pressure.

Rustproof

Unlike other forms of metal, aluminum cans are rust-proof. This makes them an ideal means of containing and storing liquid beverages.

Weight

Partially do the the small amount of metal needed to form a can, aluminum cans are lightweight. This drives down the cost to consumers, as retailers and manufacturers spend less to transport material packaged in aluminum cans than they would with glass bottles.

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