Gold has been revered in almost all human cultures for as long as civilizations have been able to admire – and use – this precious metal’s unique properties. Gold is extremely malleable, conducts electricity, doesn’t tarnish, alloys well with other metals and is easy to work into wires or sheets. Not to mention, gold is unrivaled in its natural brilliant luster and glossy shine. Because of these unique properties, gold makes its ways into almost every sphere of modern life in some way, shape or form.
Here are the 6 most common uses for gold in the world today:
About 78% of gold consumed each year is made into jewelry. Jewelry is the most common way gold reaches consumers, and has been a primary use for the metal in various cultures. Because of its beautiful and durable properties, gold jewelry is an adornment that is both ethereal and revered. Especially in India, adorning the body with gold is a way to attract wealth and blessings.
Finances and Investing:
Because gold is so rare and highly valued, this precious metal makes a natural currency, and has for at least 6,000 years. The U.S. used to hold all its monetary currency to a gold standard, and since the turn of the millennium, gold value has been on the rise in the stock market. In an uncertain economy, gold has emerged as a possible financial staple. One of the most common ways to hold or invest in gold is in gold coins, gold bars, also gold bullion. A gold IRA is a increasingly popular way to invest in gold as well.
Electronics and Computers:
Gold is a highly efficient conductor that is able to carry tiny electrical charges, and because of this property a small amount is found in almost all electronic devices, including cell phones, televisions, GPS units and more. Because gold is such an efficient conductor of electrical charges, it is also often found in desktop and laptop computers to transfer information quickly.
Dentistry and Medicine:
Gold makes for the best fillings, crowns, bridges and orthodontic appliances because the metal is chemically inert, easy to insert and nonallergenic. Gold has been used in dentistry since 700 B.C. and will probably continue to be the best option for replacing broken or missing teeth. In the medical field, small amounts of gold isotopes are used in certain radiation treatments and diagnosis.
In the aerospace industry where reliable and effective technologies are key to survival, gold plays an essential role. Gold is used to lubricate mechanical parts, conduct electricity and coat the insides of space vehicles to protect people inside from infrared radiation and heat.
Medals and Awards:
As a highly esteemed precious metal, gold makes a natural appearance in crowns, awards and religious statues. Because of its unparalleled beautiful qualities and rarity, gold is one of the highest status symbols. In everything from Academy Awards to Olympic medals, gold is recognized for its admirable qualities and it holds a permanent place of value in humanity’s eyes.
Image credits: nasa.gov, amazon.com & coolspotters.com