Metal: Ferrous, Non-Ferrous and Alloys

Hello, friends in these topics we will discuss Ferrous, Non-Ferrous and Alloys.

So let's start from basic to end.

Ferrous, Non-Ferrous and Alloys is a type of Metal so it is necessary for us firstly some know about the Metal.


Metal is an element that is used in all work of engineering.

As small as needles and as big as machines are made of metals.

Therefore, it is necessary for us to take the Knowledge of metals.

Ferrous Non Ferrous and Alloys

Types of Metal

Metal can be classified into three categories which are given below:
  • Ferrous
  • Non-Ferrous
  • Alloys


Those metals which have iron as constituents are known as ferrous metals.

First, one is pig iron and then cast iron another ferrous metal is wrought iron, we also considered carbon steel and alloy steel as ferrous metal.

Non-Ferrous Metals

Those metals which do not contain iron as constituents are called non-ferrous metals.

Some examples of non-ferrous metals are:
aluminium, copper, brass, bronze, etc.


It is made of two or more elements intimately mixed.

One of these elements must be a metal and the other non-metallic.

Some examples are:
vanadium steel, spring steel, duralumin, etc.

Now we will know from where iron is obtained.

So let's start

Iron Ore

Iron is obtained from mines.

This type of iron is not refined iron because these irons contain other types of materials like oxygen, sulphur and many more.

The iron mixture obtained from mines is called ore.

Types of Iron Ore

Iron ores are of the following types:
  • Hematite
  • Magnetite
  • Limonite
  • Siderite
  • Pyrite


Hematite is the type of ore that contains 60 to 65 Percentage of iron.

It is denoted by the Chemical formula - Fe2O7.


Magnetite is also one of the ore types which contains iron percentage up to 70 to 73%.

And denoted by the chemical formula - Fe3O4.


Limonite is one of the ores which contain a Percentage of iron up to 60%.


Siderite type of ore contains a percentage of iron 40 to 43% and is denoted by chemical formula FeCo3.


Pyrite type iron ore contains a Percentage of iron up to 47% and is denoted by the chemical formula FeS2.

Types of Iron

It can be classified as follows:
  • Pig Iron
  • Cast Iron
  • Wrought Iron
  • Steel

Pig Iron

It is obtained by the chemical reduction of iron ore. 

It contains iron (92 to 95%), carbon (3 to 4%) and some impurities such as sulphur, phosphorous, silicon, etc. 

Generally, it is used for making steel and casting.

Pig iron is of three types as follows
  1. Grey Pig Iron
  2. White Pig Iron
  3. Mottled Iron

Cast Iron

It can be produced by melting pig iron in a cupola crucible.

In a cast-iron contain carbon percentage up to 2 to 4%.

Cast iron material is so brittle and also very weak in tension. 

So, it is used in machine bases, tables and sideways.

There are six types of cast iron given below:
  1. Grey cast iron
  2. White cast iron
  3. Malleable cast iron
  4. Nodular cast iron
  5. Mottled cast iron
  6. Alloy cast iron

Grey cast iron


(C-3 to 3.5%, Si -1 to 2.75%, Mn-0.40 to 19%, P-0.15 to 1%, S-0.02 to 0.15%).

White cast iron


(C-1.75 to 2.3%, Si-0.85 to 1.2% , Mn-0.10 to 0.4%, Pb-0.5 to 0.2 %, S-0.12 to 0.35%).

Malleable cast iron


(C-2 to 2.7%, Mn-0.25 to 1.25% , Si-l to 1.75%, S-0.03 to 0.18%, P-0.5%).

Nodular cast iron


(C-3.5 to 3.78%, Si- 2.4 to 2.85 %, Mn-0.02 to 0.06%, P -0.3 to 0.06%, S - 0.2 to 0.35%).

Mottled cast iron


(C-4.86 to 5.04%, Cr-2.66 to 5.01%, V-2.51 to 5.19%, Si-1.02 to 1.15%, Mg- 0.51 to 0.42%). 

Alloy cast iron


(C-1.75 to 4%, Ni-18%, Cu-7%).

Wrought Iron

It is made by melting white pig iron through the puddling process in a river battery furnace.

This is the purest form of iron.

It contains iron 96.76 percent, carbon 0.10 percent, silicon 0.20percent, phosphorous 0.20 percent, manganese 0.01percent, sulphur 0.03% and slag 2.70%.


It is an alloy of iron and carbon with a carbon content varying up to 1.5%.

Mainly steel is of the following two types
  1. Plain Steel
  2. Alloy Steel

Plain Steel

This type of steel is mixed with Carbon & Steel. Further Plane steel is sub-categorised through the percentage of carbon content.

The first one is Low carbon steel.
The second is Medium carbon steel 
and the last one is High carbon steel.

Alloy Steel

It is mainly of two types, which is given below:
  1. Low Alloy Steel
  2. High Alloy Steel

Low Alloy Steel

It can be hardened and tempered.

It is used in manufacturing various parts of an aeroplane and camshaft, etc.

High Alloy Steel

Besides carbon, it has a high percentage of metal higher than low steel alloy.

This is of following types given below:
  1. High-Speed Steel
  2. Nickel Steel
  3. Vanadium Steel
  4. Manganese Steel
  5. Stainless Steel
  6. Silicon Steel
  7. Cobalt Steel

High-Speed Steel

Which is also known as High Tungsten Alloy Steel.

  1. Tungsten - 22%
  2. Chromium - 4%
  3. Vanadium - 1%


high-speed steel is mostly used for making the cutting tools which are performed in the different manufacturing operations.

Nickel Steel

  1. Carbon - 0.3%
  2. Nickel - 0.25 to 0.35%.


It is used for making rivets, pipes, axle shafting and part of buses, etc.

Vanadium Steel

  1. Carbon - 1.5%
  2. Tungsten - 12.5%
  3. Chromium - 4.5%
  4. Vanadium - 5%
  5. Cobalt - 5%.

  1. It is used to manufacture tools.
  2. Vanadium steel is also used for making a grinding wheel.

Manganese Steel

  1. Manganese - 1.6% to 1.9%
  2. Carbon - 0.4 to 0.5%.


It is used in industries for different purposes like grinder and rail point etc.

Stainless Steel

  1. Carbon - 0.2 to 0.6%
  2. Chromium - 12 to 18% 
  3. Nickel -8% 
  4. Molybdenum - 2%


It is used for making scissors, utensils, pipes and gears, etc.

Silicon Steel


Silicon - 14%


It is generally used in making the electric motor, generators and electric laminations of transformers.

Cobalt Steel


Cobalt - 5 to 35%


It is used to make permanent magnets.

Useful Non-ferrous Metals

These metals are not attracted by the magnet.

Some non-ferrous metals are as follows.
  • Aluminium
  • Copper
  • Zink
  • Tin
  • Silver
  • Lead



  1. It's Melting Point 660°C.
  2. It is ductile and malleable.
  3. It is used in the transportation industry, machine parts and as a reducing agent as well as also used in making electrical products like led aluminium profile, aluminium wire.


Copper divided into three categories according to the form of ore are as follows

  • In the form of oxide - Cuprite or red copper.
  • In the form of sulphide - Copper glance and copper pyrites.
  • In the form of carbonate - malamite and azurite.

  1. Its melting point is 1083° C. 
  2. It is tensile and malleable. 
  3. It is used in the parts of electronics, telephones and refrigerators.


  1. ZnO - 80% Zn
  2. ZnS - 67% Zn
  3. ZNCO3 - 54% Zn
  4. ZnO.Fe2O3 - 6.18% Zn

Melting Point 420°C.

It is used in the galvanizing of steel
and die-casting.



Tin stone or cassiterite (SnO2).

  1. Melting Point 232°C.
  2. At a temperature of 100°C, it becomes ductile and malleable. 
  3. It is used to make mirrors.



Horn silver, ruby silver, silver glass, argentite.

  1. Melting Point 960°C.
  2. It is ductile and malleable. 
  3. It is used to make the soldering and brazing alloy.



Lead sulphide (galena),lead-carbonate (cerussite) , lead sulphate (anglesite).
  1. Melting Point 320°C.
  2. It is ductile and malleable. 
  3. It is used in gun bullets.

So friends here I discussed ferrous, non-ferrous and alloys I hope you all clearly understand this topic.

Thank you 

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