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Oxygen-Free High thermal conductivity Copper, also referred to as Oxygen-free copper (OFC), is a group of high conductivity copper alloys that are refined electrolytically to keep the level of oxygen to as low as 0.001% or below. Characteristics of OFHC copper are more ductility, high thermal & electrical conductivity, high impact strength, more resistance and an easier welding process. Conductivity in ordinary metals, such as copper or silver, is limited by the presence of impurities and other defects. By reducing the extremely low level of impurities the inherent properties of copper are enhanced to a high degree. The OFHC metals thus obtained have a copper content of 99.99%.
The lower oxygen content of OFHC copper is more suitable for use in high vacuum systems, by offering better thermal cycle behaviour and achieving greater consistency in brazed and welded joints as compared to Electrolytic-Tough-Pitch, the most common copper available. The other oxygen-free copper based on compositions are OFE oxygen-free electronics (OFE) and oxygen-free (OF). OFE contains 99.99% copper and 0.0005% oxygen, and silver is an impurity whereas OF contains 99.95% copper and 0.001% oxygen. OFHC copper is employed in areas where extensive cold working is involved. OFHC copper is used in the automotive industry as rectifiers, in the electrical & electronic industry as transistor component bases, in cryogenic, anodes for vacuum tubes, microwave tubes, vacuum seals, glass to metal seals, superconductor, and telecommunications.