Pen: Life Cycle

By: Jackie Carter, Henry Miller, Daniel Ferrer

Raise and Extract

Plastic, copper, zinc, and other metals are the basic raw materials used to create a pen. Copper is mined from the ground and goes through reduction and is purified by electrolysis. Plastic is made from oil, which is drilled from the earth.


Copper and zinc are melted together to make brass. The brass is then molded into the shape needed for the manufacturing.
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The design of the pen varies on the company, but the basic steps include: ink compounding, plastic component molding, piece assembly, metal component molding, labeling, packaging and shipping. This can take 5 minutes.
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The main use of a pen is to write stories, poems, sonnets, songs, drawings, and other things.


Most pens are disposed of in the trash and end up in landfills. Recycling is always an option though.


Extracting copper. Extracting copper. (n.d.). Retrieved April 11, 2016, from

Ballpoint Pen. (n.d.). Retrieved April 11, 2016, from