A hard, brittle, silvery metal.Manganese is too brittle to be of much use as a pure metal. It is mainly used in alloys, such as steel.Steel contains about 1% manganese, to increase the strength and also improve workability and resistance to wear.Manganese steel contains about 13% manganese. This is extremely strong and is used for railway tracks, safes, rifle barrels and prison bars.Drinks cans are made of an alloy of aluminium with 1.5% manganese, to improve resistance to corrosion. With aluminium, antimony and copper it forms highly magnetic alloys.Manganese(IV) oxide is used as a catalyst, a rubber additive and to decolourise glass that is coloured green by iron impurities. Manganese sulfate is used to make a fungicide. Manganese(II) oxide is a powerful oxidising agent and is used in quantitative analysis. It is also used to make fertilisers and ceramics.