Scientific Properties of Precious Metals

All metals have scientific properties that makes them unique to industries and to the earth. While there are many metals in existence today, Precious Metals play an ever-important role in investing, collecting and other financial market situations. For thousands of years, Precious Metals like Gold and Silver were stored and hoarded as a sign of power and leverage, followed by use in commerce. Behind these elements are scientific and physical properties that give investors and collectors of Precious Metals an excuse to look at them on a deeper level. More recently, Platinum and Palladium have joined Gold and Silver as investment tools. Some of these properties may not have been covered in your science class growing up, but they offer a glimpse into the metals' importance to society.

Precious Metals and their Chemical and Scientific Properties

  1. Gold: Gold is a good conductor of heat and energy. Many collectors and investors enjoy Gold because of its value and beautiful luster. This is one of the reasons Gold jewelry is common. Gold in and of itself is largely unaffected by air and reagents, which provides Gold with longevity as a metal. Of all Precious Metals, Gold is the softest in terms of malleability and it certainly worth consideration for any collection or investment.
  2. Silver: Silver is highly ductile, which makes it a popular metal for industrial needs. Electrical applications like filaments and energy production utilize Silver as an important source for energy because it has the highest conductivity of any metal. Because of the less volatile nature of Silver and its high tolerance to air exposure, Silver is less likely to fade, tarnish or break down. Environmental factors are important to consider when buying Silver.
  3. Platinum: Platinum has the third highest density of all elements, behind only Osmium and Iridium. This lustrous metal is often confused with Silver because of the color, but the properties are vastly different. It is one of the most malleable of the Precious Metals, but it is also highly resistant to tarnishing and corrosion. Much like Gold, Platinum does not oxidize and is affected by natural environment factors. Popular in use for jewelry because of its shiny and scratch-resistant properties, Platinum is used in many industrial applications because of its conductive features and its ability to be an alloy without being chemically volatile.
  4. Palladium: Palladium is rare but is a valuable Precious Metal. It is used in applications that require low-voltage electrical contact. Palladium is an energy stabilizer. In the 1990s, Palladium was used as a primary metal in catalytic converters to reduce vehicle emissions. The stores of this Precious Metal are rare, which is one of the reasons it is used as an alloy, but it also holds an important place in industry because of its chemical properties. (Lenntech)

Precious Metals are important to the earth and various industries, but they are also valuable in the form of bullion. Investors all over the world enjoy Precious Metals because of their intrinsic value and collectibility. You can buy a wide range of Precious Metals at APMEX where the quality is high and where the customer service is the best in the industry.


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