Jewelry & Watches

The Different Types Of Precious Metals And Why Are They Valuable

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When it comes to investment, it is probably the safest bet to buy precious metals. Not only do prices for these metals fluctuate less than other investments, but they are also deemed as more valuable than anything else by many cultures past and present. This has led people to take advantage of this aspect and create all sorts of objects using these precious metals as a way to show off their wealth and/or power. All precious metals on the periodic table have some value, but there are different types of them and they vary in how rare or common they are as well as how expensive each one is.

1. Gold

Gold is one of the most popular types of precious metals. Also known as aurum, gold is a yellow metal whose chemical symbol Au stands for the Latin word for gold itself. Discovered far back in recorded history, gold has been used for currency and jewelry since the beginning of civilizations. In fact, many of the world’s gold reserves are still held in central banks and it is often seen as a sign of stability for economies. Gold is rare, but not as rare as some of the other precious metals, making it relatively affordable. It is also one of the most malleable metals, meaning it can be easily molded into different shapes. However, not all gold is priced the same, as you could see when you go to buy gold at NPMEX or another similar platform. The cost of gold is also affected by its purity, which is measured in karats. The most commonly used scales for this measure are 24k and 18k, with the first number representing pure gold and the second one how much it has been mixed with another metal such as silver or copper. 

2. Platinum

One of the rarest precious metals, platinum has the chemical symbol Pt and is one of the densest as well as most resilient. Discovered in South America by pre-Columbian people, platinum was also used for barter and trade. Platinum is worth over five times the price of gold and its price fluctuates less than other precious metals, which has led it to be used in high-end jewelry. Platinum is also often combined with other metals or elements for scientific experiments since it can be mixed with iridium and create alloys that are three times harder than pure platinum. It’s also non-toxic, making it a popular choice for medical implants and devices. 

3. Silver

Just like gold, silver is a popular precious metal that has been used in jewelry and other objects for thousands of years. The chemical symbol for silver is Ag from the Latin word Argentum, meaning silver. It is not as rare as gold but is still more expensive than other metals. Silver has been used all over the world and is also popular for its wide range of uses. For example, silver can be combined with other metals like copper to create alloys that are strong enough to be used as electrical conductors. It is also often used in mirrors because it has a high reflectivity. The price of silver is also very affordable, making it a popular choice for investors. 

4. Palladium

A rare metal, palladium was discovered in 1803 in South America. The chemical symbol for palladium is Pd and it is mostly used in jewelry or scientific experiments because of its resilience and ability to resist corrosion. Palladium’s price is about the same as silver, but it has more applications than just science and jewelry, including converters that reduce pollution from cars. It is also a very good electrical conductor and it can be combined with other metals to create alloys. The price of palladium changes depending on the market, but it’s currently worth around $950 an ounce. Ounces are one of the more common ways of measuring precious metals. 

5. Iridium

Discovered by Smithson Tennant, iridium is one of the rarest metals on Earth. Its chemical symbol is Ir and it’s also one of the densest precious metals out there, being about twice as heavy as lead. The price of iridium may seem steep because of this, but its high melting point makes it a popular choice for things like medical implants and fountain pens. Iridium is also corrosion-resistant, meaning it doesn’t corrode in water or other liquids. It is mostly used in alloys because of its properties and it’s often combined with platinum or gold. The rarity of iridium means that it can be hard to find, but it’s worth the investment. However, given its rarity, the price varies greatly.

With so many precious metals available, it can be hard to determine which one is best for investing. But if you want the most affordable metal that has a high return on investment, gold remains the best option. However, silver and platinum are still good choices because of their properties and commercial applications. Regardless, it’s always good to be aware of the different types of precious metals and their unique properties, so you can make the best decision for your needs.

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