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Most Common Types of Non-Ferrous Materials in Process Piping Industry

Material selection is an essential aspect of any piping project. In process piping, engineers need to ensure that the material does not affect the product's manufacturing. Non-ferrous materials are c...

Material selection is an essential aspect of any piping project. In process piping, engineers need to ensure that the material does not affect the product's manufacturing.

Non-ferrous materials are commonly used in the process of piping systems. One of the top reasons behind this is their non-iron content and high tensile strength. It makes non-ferrous material less prone to rust and corrosion compared to other options.

In this article, we will look at the non-ferrous materials used in the process piping industry.

Nickel and Nickel Alloys

This material is ideal for the piping systems in industrial applications such as oil & gas extraction, power generation & more. It is resistive against extreme heat environments due to a thick passivating oxide layer on its surface.

A few standard nickel alloys are nickel-copper, nickel-chromium, and nickel- molybdenum.

The properties of nickel include:

  • High resistance to corrosion and oxidation
  • Ideal for handling alkalis or storing caustic soda or similar substances
  • Widely used in projects having seawater and mild atmospheric conditions


The plastic material is used in the systems where temperatures and pressures are relatively moderate. It is lightweight, easy to fabricate & install, has low friction characteristics & works as an excellent electrical & thermal insulator. The typical plastic material types that are commercially available include thermoplastics and thermosetting plastics.

Significant benefits of thermoplastic and thermosetting plastic materials:

  • Low installation and maintenance costs
  • Lightweight, sturdy and reliable
  • Highly chemical-resistant
  • Can withstand against different temperatures based on the combination of elements like asbestos, graphite, fluorocarbons and more used

Copper and Copper Alloys

In the systems where heat and thermal conductivity are crucial, engineers prefer copper and its alloys. The common types include copper-zinc, copper-tin and copper-nickel.

This non-ferrous metal

  • Provides good corrosion resistivity and thermal conductivity
  • Has high ductile form
  • Is suitable for the applications in seawater conditions as well as heat exchangers, boilers and more

Aluminum and Aluminum Alloys

Though aluminum material is not widely used in process piping, engineers consider it mostly due to its low weight and high corrosion resistant capabilities. It is a go-to option for drill pipes and gas storage containers, planes, railway cars & more.

The standard alloying elements of aluminum are copper, silicon, manganese, zinc and magnesium.

Critical characteristics of aluminum include:

  • High thermal conductivity
  • Suits different environment conditions
  • Easy to cast, forge, machine and weld

How to Select the Best Material for Process Piping in Your Industrial or Commercial Facility

The pipe material has a direct impact on the success of the overall system. ThereforeHealth Fitness Articles, it is vital that you weigh various factors in choosing the right option.

A right selection approach can cover

  • Material’s compatibility with the fluid or gas passing through
  • Temperature & pressure of the substance handled by the system
  • Suitability of the content for the environmental condition
  • Maintenance requirement


Different non-ferrous materials come with different strengths and characteristics. An experienced process piping engineering service provider can assist with the right material selection and process piping design engineering as per your business requirement. They can help make your project a success while following international industry standards.

Source: Free Articles from


Judith Morrison is an expert in the field of industrial engineering and writes articles related to piping, civil, equipment engineering related articles.


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