Gold

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Gold is a precious metal known for its yellow color and softness. It plays a major role as a currency or investment and as a hedge against inflation.



Gold
Name Gold
Symbol Au
Atomic number 79
Atomic mass 196.96655 amu
Gold nugget

Gold is a chemical element. Gold is in group 11, the copper group, it has 79 protons in its nucleus. It is a precious metal which has been used as currency. Gold is found in nature as nuggets or grains in rocks, underground and in deposits. It is a soft, shiny, yellow metal.


Contents

Purity

The purity of gold in a compound is measured in Karats, with 24 karats being pure gold. 18 karat gold is three quarters gold, one quarter other elements, and so forth. Gold is usually in alloys because it is soft and pliable.

Value

Due to its characteristics being both resistant to oxidisation and rarity on Earth, gold is seen as very valuable. Gold is the basis for a monetary standard used by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the Bank for International Settlements (BIS). Gold is currently in excess of $1400 per ounce.[2]

Uses

Because gold is highly conductive and very resistant to oxidation, it is vital in electronics. Gold plating is used on switch contacts, printed circuit boards, and device leads. There is enough gold in electronic devices to make it worthwhile to process discarded devices in order to reclaim the gold in them.

World Production (2010) [1]

Rank Country Production (kg) Production (%)
1 China 320,000 13
2 United States 223,000 9
3 Australia 222,000 9
4 South Africa 197,698 8
5 Russian Federation 190,693 7
6 Peru 182,391 7
7 Indonesia 130,000 5
8 Canada 97,367 3
9 Uzbekistan 90,000 3
10 Ghana 86,000 3
11 Papua New Guinea 66,000 2
12 Brazil 60,000 2
13 Mexico 51,393 2
14 Colombia 47,837 1
15 Argentina 47,000 1
16 Mali 42,000 1
17 Chile 40,834 1
18 Tanzania United Republic Of 40,000 1
19 Philippines 37,047 1
20 Kazakhstan 22,000 0
21 Guinea 18,083 0
22 Kyrgyzstan 16,950 0
23 Burkina Faso 13,500 0
24 New Zealand 13,442 0
25 Suriname 12,193 0
26 Turkey 12,000 0
27 Venezuela 10,500 0
28 Mongolia 9,803 0
29 Guatemala 8,485 0
30 Guyana 8,183 0
31 Mauritania 8,000 0
32 Japan 7,000 0
33 Finland 7,000 0
34 Bolivia 7,000 0
35 Côte D'ivoire 6,573 0
36 Senegal 5,600 0
37 Saudi Arabia 5,500 0
38 Sweden 5,000 0
39 Lao People's Democratic Republic 5,000 0
40 Zimbabwe 4,200 0


Gold was one of the three Gifts of the Magi, along with frankincense and myrrh.[2]

Gold is also used in jewelry. Other uses of gold include aerospace, awards, bullion, coinage, computers, currency backing, dentistry, electronics, glassmaking, gold gilding and gold leaf and medical. [3]


Quotes

"Gold is the money of kings, silver is the money of gentlemen, barter is the money of peasants and debt is the money of slaves." -- Traditional

See Also


References

  1. http://www.world-nuclear.org/info/inf23.html
  2. Matthew 2:11 [1]
  3. The Many Uses of Gold, Geology.com, accessed December 11, 2008

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