Alpha brass

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Description

Alpha brass is an alloy of brass that contains less than 38% of zinc. The zinc is dissolved in the copper and the alloy has the same structure as copper. Alpha brass is ductile, has high tensile strength and can be cold-worked. Most ancient brasses do not contain over 28% zinc as this was the proportion that was adsorbed by the copper when the zinc ore was reduced (Scott, 1991).

Synonyms and Related Terms

Alpha-Messing (Deut.)

Additional Information

D.Scott, Metallography and Microstructure of Ancient and Historic Metals, Getty Conservation Institute, 1991.

Sources Checked for Data in Record

  • G.S.Brady, Materials Handbook, McGraw-Hill Book Co., New York, 1971 Comment: p. 114
  • David C. Scott, Metallography and Microstructure of Ancient and Historic Metals, The Getty Conservation Institute, Los Angeles, 1991
  • Henry Hodges, Artifacts: An Introduction to Early Materials and Technology, Ronald P. Frye, Kingston, Canada, 1988

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