Friday, January 30, 2009

Interesting Facts About Silver

This blog is primarily dedicated to gold because of the central role it plays in the precious metals market. But I think it's important not to leave out gold's little cousin who has massive potential in the precious metals bull market. So as a brief introduction to this highly undervalued metal, here are some interesting facts about silver.

What is sterling silver made of?

Intresting facts about silverSterling silver is an alloy containing 92.5% pure silver, plus 7.5% of another kind of metal, usually copper and more recently sometimes germanium. These days, sterling silver fineness can be identified
by looking for a stamp that says "sterling" or ".925". This standard of fineness originated with British silver coins in the 13th century BCE, but has now become the main standard of
silver used throughout the world. Pure silver is very soft and malleable, so the 7.5% of additional metals fortifies the silver for use in jewelry and other objects.

What is fine silver?

Fine silver, also known as pure silver, is at least 99.9% pure. It is used in silver bullion but is too soft for use in objects that will be handled.

How long has silver been used as money?

Silver has been coined and used as representative money since around 700 BCE.

Other facts:

-Silver compounds are used to expediate healing in burn victims.

Silver bullion gold coin American Eagle-Like gold, silver is an excellent conductor of elecricity and is used extensively on circuit boards and high voltage connectors. In fact, silver is the most conductive of all metals. Its conductivity is rated 100 on a scale of 1 to 100, while gold is rated 76, and copper is rated 97.

- Out of all the physical elements, silver is the best conductor of heat. It is therefore used extensively in solar panels, and also in your car's rear-window defogger.

-Silver is more optically reflective than all other metals, reflecting more than 95% of the visible light spectrum. Most mirrors, both personal and industrial, are therefore made with a silver reflective backing.

-Silver is more ductile (can be stretched) and malleable (can be flattened) than any element except for gold.

Just like gold, silver is valued not only for its perceived rarity and beauty, but also for its utility. It is an ever-present element of our modern lives.

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