Metals combine with other metals and some non-metallic elements to form a vast number of alloys that enhance the properties of metals in specific applications, e.g., the combination of iron, nickel and chromium provides a series of stainless steel alloys that are in common use.
The properties of strength and ductility enable the extensive use of metals in structures and machinery. Metals and alloys exhibit ductility, malleability and the ability to be deformed plastically (that is, without breaking), making them easy to shape into beams (steel beams for construction), extrusions (aluminum frames for doors and windows), coins, metal cans and a variety of fasteners (nails and paper-clips).
Metals are excellent conductors of both heat and electricity. In general, conductivity increases with decreasing temperature, so that, at absolute zero (-273°C), conductivity is infinite; in other words, metals become superconductors.