We wear the colors here and there, buy jewelry for our partners or ourselves made from these metals, and use expressions that refer to them in everyday language. However, how much do most of us really know about the shiny substances gold and silver?
The answer is typically not much. Whether you’re thinking about proposing in 2022 and are paying more attention to metals as a result, or are keen to get into new investment options such as buying gold and silver, it’s good to understand the ins and outs of these valuable precious metals.
Gold Can Be Rarer Than Diamonds
Diamonds are a girl’s best friend and all and certainly worth a lot of money, but did you know that gold can be rarer still? While large diamonds might cost millions, many exist in the world. When it comes to large chunks of gold, you’ll be looking for longer. It’s harder to find a one-ounce nugget of gold than it is to find a hefty five-carat diamond.
Compare gold to the steel industry, and you’ll get an even better idea of just how limited the earth’s supply of the metal is right now. Globally, more steel gets poured each hour for various uses than has even been poured of gold since the beginning of recorded human history. This is why investing in the substance can prove beneficial over the years. Buy a genuine gold bar today, and it’s likely to keep going up in value over the years since there’s only so much of the metal to be found on earth.
Gold is Found Beyond Land
We all think of gold as being mined in extensive, cleared areas of land, and that’s where a lot of it is found. However, a fun fact about this shiny object is that it can also be found under the water. Sea-beds within the ocean hold significant treasures of gold and are estimated to contain up to 15,000 tons of the substance. Plus, gold, as well as silver, are found in space.
Gold Uses Go Beyond the Obvious
We know that gold is used all the time to make jewelry, and around half of all the gold mined these days gets used for such purposes. Yet, gold has many other applications, too. For instance, it’s increasingly purchased for industrial applications. Today, there’s a strong demand for gold for technical uses. It gets poured into products for industries ranging from dentistry and space to electronics and nanotech, among other things.
Gold Coins Go Way Back
Another fun fact about gold that you might like to know is that coins made of precious metal have been traded and valued by humans for many centuries. In fact, the first gold coins historians know of to date appeared around 700 BC when merchants produced the first products.
Silver is Antimicrobial
We tend to think of precious metals as objects we can use for trade and manufacturing and the like, but it’s interesting to note that they can have medical applications, too. For example, silver has long been known for its antimicrobial properties. Ancient civilizations used silver to help control infections. Today medical researchers have renewed interest in investigating how silver’s antimicrobial properties could be enhanced and further applied for health benefits.
With silver able to kill germs, it has far-reaching possibilities. In particular, you’ll see that many pieces of medical equipment in hospitals and clinics and the like are coated in solver. This helps to ensure medical tools remain sterile. Similarly, gold is proving handy for medical applications. Injectable gold is said to help arthritic sufferers and to generally help reduce pain and swelling in those with numerous other conditions, too, including tuberculosis.
Silver is a Significant Conductor
Another fun fact about silver you may not expect is that it is the world’s most electrically conductive element. No other substance on our planet conducts electricity as well as silver, not even gold or copper. Furthermore, silver is an excellent conductor of heat, so it has many thermal conduction applications.
Other fun facts about gold and silver include that our bodies actually contain tiny amounts of gold, and we can safely eat small bits of it too. Plus, gold is incredibly pliable and can be made into sewing thread, among other things. On the other hand, silver is super reflective and was one of the very first elements ever discovered by humans.
Gold and silver are fascinating substances that have changed and continue to affect our world and lives. Next time you use or come across them, it’s worth thinking about how interesting they are.