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Nickel is the fifth most common element found on earth. It is found in about 20 countries with known reserves estimated to last around 100 years at present mining rates. The metal occurs as two main deposits: sulphides that are found underground and laterites that can be mined using open pit methods.

Nickel productNickel product

Nickel is a hard, ductile metal with high resistance to corrosion and oxidation. Primary nickel is produced and used in the form of ferronickel, nickel oxide and other chemicals, and as pure nickel metal.

The main use for nickel is as an alloying metal along with chromium and other metals, in the production of stainless and heat-resisting steel. About 65% of all refined nickel produced is used by the stainless steel sector.

It is also used to make corrosion-resistant alloys for use in chemical plants and to make super-alloys that can withstand extreme temperatures for industries such as aviation. It also has high-tech electronic applications and is used as a substrate in chromium plating.

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