Aluminium: The Best Material for Signage Systems
AI. 13. Alumium. Aluminum. Aluminium. Whichever name or acronym you know it by, aluminium is the core of our business, and for good reason!
Its ability to protect itself from rust by forming a hard oxide around any corrosion is just one of the many reasons we prefer to use it for our signage systems, not to mention the fact that the average item made from aluminium will typically last well over a century if not damaged or destroyed!
Durability and strength are just two of the many benefits aluminium brings to our signage systems, and in turn, our customers and their end users.
Aluminium is one of the strongest metals in the world, although not as strong or hard as steel. Its malleability makes it desirable, however, as it can be shaped and pushed to harder limits than other metals can without ripping or cracking.
Aluminium is not magnetic, and it does not spark; it has a melting point of 660°C so we know that no matter where in the world our signage systems end up, they won’t be melting even in the most extreme of weather conditions!
Aluminium does not rust; it can corrode, but if this happens, it forms an aluminium oxide around the corroded part like a hardened skin, thus preventing any further corrosion. This means that aluminium does not need to be coated with any corrosion resistant treatment, unlike metals such as steel which will rust if not protected, especially if used outdoors or in a rough environment.
The rust resistant properties of aluminium plus its core strength and durability mean that it has extremely good longevity and can last well over a century; the Empire State Building was built in the 1930s with aluminium used in the tower section – to date, this shows no sign of corrosion or weakness!
We guarantee the design life of our aluminium signs for 7-10 years, but the core material they are made from will last much, much longer than this and can, of course, be 100% recycled at the end of its original lifespan!
We take our environmental responsibility very seriously and every aspect of our sign production has been carefully considered with environmental impact in mind. Using aluminium works extremely well with our commitment to minimise our carbon footprint, especially as it is so recyclable. We recycle 100% of our waste aluminium here at Ashby, and our extruded aluminium products are made from aluminium alloy with 20-25% recycled content.
There is no limit on the amount of times aluminium as a metal can be recycled and as it stands, 35% of the aluminium being supplied globally is recycled – we expect to see this increase and it is feasible that, one-day, aluminium ore mining may be able cease entirely and the world could rely on recycled aluminium. In the UK alone, over 70% of aluminium products are recycled.
The total energy required to recycle aluminium is only 5% of that it takes to mine and create it as a primary metal; if we were able to stop the creation process, imagine the reduction in greenhouse gases and carbon footprint from this process alone!
It is also the most abundant metal found naturally on the planet – 8% of the world’s crust is aluminium; the only 2 materials that surpass it are oxygen and silicon!