Copper is ruled by the planet Venus and used for fertility. It corresponds to the letter I and amethyst, its astrological houses are Taurus and Libra. It is sacred to the Goddess and Oya. Venus is the goddess of love, beauty, art, balance, harmony and peace. Venus is the planet with the lowest rotation. The character of the planet and goddess Venus is passive, receptive, magnetic, feminine, relating, adaptation to the other one, kindness and gentleness, and enjoyment.
Copper embodies the nurturing aspect of women and their youthfulness. It is associated with the matters of love and lust, and symbolizes characteristics like charisma, feminine beauty, artistic creativity, affection, caring and balance. It is also considered a healing metal that teaches about living a fulfilling life. Copper is used in rituals, spells and amulets to promote love, sensuality, friendship, positive relationships of any kind, negotiations, and peace.
The metal copper has a great connecting power, easily combines with other metals and transfers warmth and electricity (think of the copper in electrical wires). It is one of the oldest metals and copper metallurgy has flourished in different cultures, including the Middle Eastern, Asian, European, Central & South American and Native American.
The first metal ever extracted and used by humans and is the first to be smelted from ores. Copper occurs naturally in the earth’s crust in a variety of forms. It can be found in sulfide deposits (as chalcopyrite, bornite, chalcocite, covellite), in carbonate deposits (as azurite and malachite), in silicate deposits (as chrysycolla and dioptase) and as pure ‘native’ copper.
It has made vital contributions to sustaining and improving society since the dawn of civilization. Copper was first used in coins, jewelry, and ornaments starting about 8000 B.C. Approximately 5500 B.C. the pliable metal which can hold a sharp edge was used to produce tools and weapons and helped civilization emerge from the Stone Age. The discovery that copper alloyed with tin produces bronze marked the beginning of the Bronze Age at about 3000 B.C.
In astrology alchemy the seven heavenly bodies known to the ancients were associated with seven metals also known in antiquity:
Copper is valued for its ductility and conductivity as it is second only to silver. The soft metal is regarded as the standard in electrical conduction. It has great malleability; is easily stretched, molded, and shaped. Copper is resistant to corrosion; and conducts heat and electricity efficiently. As a result, copper was important to early humans and continues to be a material of choice for a variety of domestic, industrial, and high-technology applications today.
Presently, copper is used in building construction, power generation and transmission, electronic product manufacturing, and the production of industrial machinery and transportation vehicles. Copper wiring and plumbing are integral to appliances, heating and cooling systems, and telecommunications links used every day in homes and businesses. Most data cables are made from it. The average home contains 182 kg (400 pounds) of copper wiring.
Copper is an essential component in the motors, wiring, radiators, connectors, brakes, and bearings used in cars and trucks. The average car contains 1.5 kilometers (0.9 mile) of copper wire, and the total amount of copper ranges from 20 kilograms (44 pounds) in small cars to 45 kilograms (99 pounds) in luxury and hybrid vehicles. Electric cars use 2 – 3 X the amount. The element is also used in construction of trains, lorries, and other vehicles.
Battery currents use high purity copper wire harness systems. The current is transmitted to satellite navigation systems, on-board computers, central locking, and lights. Electric supper trams built from this material reduces the pollution that transportation usually produces. The same metal is applied in overhead contact wiring.
It is the third most widely used metal in industries next to aluminum and iron.
More than half of the copper produced is for electricity. Its core functions are transmission of electricity and power generation. The metal is employed in electric cables, generators, bus bars, motors and transformers. Properly set the metal produces electricity efficiently and safely. It is used in electrical equipment and is present in mobile phones, TV and computers. The average amount of copper in each of the estimated 2 billion personal computers is about 1.5 pounds or 68 kilograms.
Semiconductor manufacturers use copper for circuitry in silicon chips, which enables microprocessors to operate faster and use less energy. Copper rotors have also recently been found to increase the efficiency of electric motors, which are a major consumer of electric power.
When applied for electrical transmission it is superior to aluminum. The metal is utilized in heat sinks and exchanges. Its heat dissipation capacity is also superior to aluminum. The metallic element is used to build magnetron and other vacuum tubes.
The red metal is used in artillery shell casings and small arms ammunition.
The excellent alloying properties of copper have made it invaluable when combined with other metals, such as zinc (to form brass), tin (bronze), or nickel (cupronickel). These alloys have desirable characteristics and, depending on their composition, are developed for highly specialized applications. For example, copper-nickel alloy is applied to the hulls of ships because it does not corrode in seawater and reduces the adhesion of marine life, such as barnacles, thereby reducing drag and increasing fuel efficiency. Brass is more malleable and has better acoustic properties than pure copper or zinc; consequently, it is used in a variety of musical instruments, including trumpets, trombones, bells, and cymbals.
As in ancient times, copper remains a component of coinage used in many countries, but many new uses have been identified. One of copper's more recent applications includes its use in frequently touched surfaces and household fixtures (such as brass doorknobs), where copper's antimicrobial properties reduce the transfer of germs and disease. Its anti-microbial elements also assist in producing hygienic surfaces in healthcare institutions.
Copper electroplated nickel silver is used for some spoons, knives and frying pans. The same material is used for counters, sinks, bathtubs, and heating cylinders. As pigmented salt the metal can be used for sculptures, statues and decorative art.
Other uses of copper include being a nutrient for animals and plants. Traces of the metal can be found in bone, muscles, liver and tissues. The main purpose of copper in an organism is serving as an enzyme co-factor. This knowledge isn’t new and the ancients were aware of its antibacterial properties. The Greeks used the metal to cure ulcers and open wounds.
The absorption of some copper is necessary, because copper is a trace element that is essential for human health.
Modern medicine applies copper bracelets to reduce arthritis and joint pains. Lack of copper in people may produce shaggy skin, varicose veins and graying of the hair. This metallic element can help in enhancing the skin’s elastic fiber. With enough copper, hair problems may be avoided.
Copper is found in everything from water taps to high-tech gadgetry.
Copper is a privileged metal in that it is traded in the form of copper cathodes on several major exchanges. The LME (London Metal Exchange) trades in dollars and 25 Metric Tonne lots, COMEX (Commodity Exchange Inc. merged with the New York Mercantile exchange in 1994 and now based in Chicago) quoted in dollars and pounds, and SFHE (Shanghai Future Exchange) in Renminbi (Yuan) and 5 Metric Tonne lots. It also traded on other exchanges for example the MCX and NCDEX of India. The delivery periods and other contract terms vary while the chemical composition of the cathodes are similar.
Market lingo for the base metal that is reputed to have a Ph.D. in economics because of its ability to predict turning points in the global economy - “Dr. Copper – the metal with a PhD. in economics” tends to be an accurate barometer of global economic activity with its widespread applications in most of its sectors. Demand for copper is often viewed as a reliable leading indicator of economic health. This demand is reflected in the market price of copper. Generally, rising copper prices suggest strong copper demand and hence a growing global economy, while declining copper prices may indicate sluggish demand and an imminent economic slowdown.