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Silver and gold - Research Paper Example

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Insert Name Insert Grade Course Insert Insert Date Silver and Gold Introduction Gold and silver are some of the longest known metals to mankind. They have played a vital role in the world economics. Gold and silver have been used since the ancient times in jewelry…
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Silver and gold
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"Silver and gold"

Download file to see previous pages This paper seeks to analyze the historical background of silver and gold, their ancient and modern uses, the manufacturing process, the impact the materials have on the environment, their cultural significance, and future innovations on the usage of the metals. Silver History of Silver The first major silver mines were discovered in Anatolia, which is the modern day Turkey, in 3000 BC. In the 1st Century AD, Spain became a key silver producer due to Roman discoveries. In early 1500s huge silver deposits were found in Bolivia, Peru, and Mexico which enriched the Spanish empire for a period of 300 years. In the period 1500 to 1875 about 1.5 billion ounces of silver were mined in Mexico with a large percentage mined in the 1700s. In the 1700s, silver became the backbone of Spanish Empire and 1 billion ounces was mined in the Veta Madre in Mexico. 1857 saw the state of Nevada adopting Silver mining as a major industry when Comstock Lode was found in Nevada. Nevada became to be known as the silver state because of the silver mining. From 1857 to 1877, Comstock produced gold and silver of an approximate value of 400 million US dollars which could have been worth about 500 Billion US dollars in the modern days. There was a 50 percent increase in the global yield of Silver between 1900 and 1920. This amounted to about 190 million troy ounces per year and discoveries were made in other countries such as the United States and Canada. From 1921 to present improved techniques has led to separation of Silver from Zinc, copper and lead. This has led to an increase in production of Silver and its usage. Silver was among the first metals known to man. The other metal is gold. The ancient population valued Silver because of its white color, brilliant luster, non-corrodibility nature and it was relatively easy to work with. Today, silver still stands out as one of the most valued metals because of the above properties but several other characteristics have changed the trend of silver usage from being merely monetary and decorative metal to being predominantly an industrial metal. Usage of Silver Silver is a soft, malleable and the most ductile among the metals. These properties have led to it being fabricated into personal adornment items and decorative items of various types. Hence, chain necklaces, neck rings, silver bracelets, and other jewelry items were developed as from ancient times. In the later days, silver was used to make decorative things such as handles for swords and daggers and later when approaching the modern times it was fashioned into eating utensils and various tableware items. The industrial usage of silver arose in the 19th and 20th centuries. The following section illustrates the chronological account for the usage of silver. In the 1820s, silver and silver salts became major component for the development of photography. Since the late 1830s, silver has been used in the manufacture of silver-mercury amalgams that are used for restoring teeth. In the third millennium BC the Egyptians made mirrors of polished silver while “silvering” of mirrors with metals such as mercury, tin and lead was adopted in Europe before Renaissance period. In 1835, Justus von Liebig invented the process of large scale production of silvered glass through a chemical reduction of silver nitrate compound. In 1840, the process for electroplating of silver was granted a patent and it was the first patent to be granted for electroplating any metal. Alessandro Volta used silver and zinc for making ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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