Structural applications of aluminium are considered in this paper. Although the discussion is mainly devoted to Europe, the paper also refers, where possible, to developments in other parts of the world. The problems faced by a designer in creating an optimum design are described, followed by a brief review of the research carried out in the past four decades on the structural behaviour of aluminium and a preview of topics still to be investigated. A historical overview of standards is then given, starting from the ECCS Recommendations up to the recently published Eurocode 9. Finally, a number of structural applications are dealt with, as well as some future directions and concluding remarks.