Tin is a silver, malleable metal that does not oxidize easily and is resistant to corrosion. It is therefore used in many alloys and to coat other metals. It is obtained from the mineral called cassiterite, where it is presented as oxide (tin oxide or tin dioxide). Said mineral is ground and enriched in tin dioxide by flotation, then roasted and heated with coke in an oven whereby the metal is obtained. Pure tin has two variants. Gray, non metallic powder, semiconductor, very fragile, with a cubic structure and stable at a temperature below 13.2º. And the white, the normal, metallic, electric conductor, with a tetragonal structure and stable at temperatures above 13.2º. These are its main applications.
As a protective coating of copper, iron and various metals used in the manufacture of tin cans.
It is also used in compounds to reduce the fragility of glass.
Tin compounds are used for fungicides, dyes, dentifrices and pigments.
In alloy with copper to make bronze.
For soft welding, lead alloy.
In alloy with lead to manufacture the sheet of the tubes of the musical organs.
As a soft solder material with soldering iron, either pure or alloyed. An EU directive prohibits the use of lead in the welding of certain electronic devices.
It is used in the ceramics industry to manufacture ceramic glazes.
To coat the steel.
It is also used in the overcapping of wine bottles, in capsule form. Its use was extended after the ban on the use of lead in the food industry. Spain is one of the largest manufacturers of tin capsules.