Gold Facts

buy gold buy silverIt is always recommended to learn as much as your can about everything, but particularly about elements as valuable to you as gold. Here are 10 interesting facts about the element gold.

  • Gold is the only metal that is yellow or “golden”. Other metals may develop a yellowish color, but only after they have oxidized or reacted with other chemicals.
  • Nearly all of the gold on Earth came from meteorites that bombarded the planet over 200 million years after it formed.
  • The element symbol for gold is Au. The symbol comes from the old Latin name for gold, aurum, which means “shining dawn” or “glow of sunrise”. The word “gold” comes from the Germanic languages, originating from the Proto-Germanic gulþ and Proto-Indo-European ghel, meaning “yellow/green”. The pure element has been known since ancient times.
  • Gold is extremely ductile. A single ounce of gold (about 28 grams) can be stretched into a gold thread 5 miles (8 kilometers) long. Gold threads can even be used as embroidery thread.
  • Malleability is a measure of how easily a material can be hammered into thin sheets. Gold is the most malleable element. A single ounce of gold can be beaten out into a sheet that is 300 square feet. A sheet of gold can be made thin enough to be transparent. Very thin sheets of gold may appear greenish blue because gold strongly reflects red and yellow. Extremely fine sheets of gold are uses on Astronauts helmet’s face shields to help block heat and reflections.
  • Although gold is a heavy, dense metal, it is generally considered non-toxic. Gold metal flakes may be eaten in foods or drinks.
  • 24 karat gold is pure elemental gold. 18 karat gold is 75% pure gold. 14 karat gold is 58.5% pure gold, and 10 karat gold is 41.7% pure gold. The remaining portion of the metal usually is silver, but may consist of other metals or a combination of metals, such as platinum, copper, palladium, zinc, nickel, iron, and cadmium.
  • Gold is a noble metal. It is relatively unreactive and resists degradation by air, moisture, or acidic conditions. While acids dissolve most metals, a special mixture of acids called aqua regia is used to dissolve gold.
  • Gold has many uses, aside from its monetary and symbolic value. Among other applications, it is used in electronics, electrical wiring, dentistry, electronics, medicine, radiation shielding, and to color glass.
  • Gold melts at 1064 degrees centigrade.
  • There has been approximately 174,100 tonnes of gold mined throughout all known history.
  • There are 31.1 grams of gold in a troy ounce. The “troy ounce” of gold comes from the French town of Troyes, which first created a system of weights in the Middle Ages used for precious metals and gems. One troy ounce is 480 grains. A grain is exactly 64.79892 mg.
  • Throughout history gold has often been seen as a symbol of wealth.

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