For thousands of years mankind has coveted gold, with its shiny appearance and being extremely malleable, it is a very versatile metal. However, gold is that rare that the world pours more molten steel in an hour than all of the gold mined throughout history.
And it seems gold has transformed from being coveted through bartering systems centuries ago to online gold being traded via the Internet! Welcome to the twenty-first century, gold!
Uses for Gold
There are many different uses for gold, but between 50-80% of the gold that we mine each year goes towards making jewellery. After jewellery the next largest use of gold is for investment, which includes the creating of gold bullion and coins. People in adverse situations also tend to opt cash for gold. Another use for gold is in electronics due to gold having excellent conduction properties, as well as being very malleable.
The average mobile phone contains between $0.50 and $1.00 worth of gold. If you took one ounce of gold, you would be able to make a wire almost 100km long.
Gold is from Space!
Scientists having examined the Vredefort crater in South Africa and have concluded that the majority of accessible gold that we find on the Earth arrived from Space some two billion years ago. The majority of gold that is within the earth is estimated to be at the planet’s core. The gold is in a molten state and is untouchable, and there is estimated to be 1.6 quadrillion tons of gold.
Alternative Uses for Gold
During the early twentieth century, a medical study in France concluded that gold is an effective treatment for rheumatoid arthritis. Even more bizarrely, during the fourteenth-century drinking a mixture of molten gold and crushed emeralds was used as a cure for the bubonic plague.
The winners at the 1912 Olympic Games won gold medals that were solid gold. Currently, the gold medals that you can win at the Olympics contain only six grams of gold. The Amersham Corporation of Illinois uses tiny spheres of gold to tag proteins in the human body to identify functions in order to create treatments.
Pure gold is so soft that you can mould it with your hands. You can beat a gram of gold into a square meter sheet, and it would be so thin that light can shine through it.
The Biggest Producer of Gold
For a very long time, the largest producer of gold has been South Africa. However, in 2008 South Africa was overtaken by China in producing more gold. It was the first time since 1905 that any country has produced more gold than South Africa. The largest gold nugget though was found in Australia and weighed a whopping 90kg.
All of the gold that has been mined since 1910 accounts for roughly around 75% of the gold in circulation, almost all of the gold from before 1910 is still in circulation in one form or another.
By the end of 2009, it was estimated that we had mined 165,446 tonnes of gold, this equates to around 25 grams of gold for every person on the planet.
There are many more facts about gold that you might find interesting. If you are more interested in holding the stuff in your hands, then Gold Buyers in Melbourne and other major cities in Australia have plenty of it for sale!
There are estimates that we have mined only around 20% of the gold that is on our planet, which leaves a whopping 80% to remove from the ground. So what other facts about gold are there?