Gold Uses: Modern Applications
Gold has been used by humans for thousands of years and the primary uses of this precious metal have not changed. Using gold to fashion ornaments and jewelry and as the ultimate store of value is still the main uses of gold today.
As technology advanced over the past decades, gold has found additional uses in areas such as electronics and dentistry but these new applications consume only a small proportion of gold mined every year.
Gold is accepted world-wide and is the real money that cannot be subjected to artificial devaluation.
Money is something that functions as a medium of exchange. The ideal money has to be easily identifiable, durable, stable and free from intrinsic price fluctuations. Gold meets all of these criteria and is perhaps the only material in the world that does.
Being the best form of money, gold is the traditional anti-inflation protection. Fiat currency, or bad money, can be subjected to devaluation as a result of wars, revolutions or bad government fiscal policies. In times of financial crisis, gold is the refuge of choice for those seeking a safe economic haven.
Gold bangles in a Dubai gold shop. Similar displays can be found in gold in gold bazaars all over the Arab Gulf States.
This beautiful metal is extremely ductile and malleable, making it easy to work with. Since prehistoric times, gold is primarily used to make ornaments. Till today, the biggest proportion of the annual production of gold is consumed by the jewelry industry.
China and India are the two rising economic giants that will significantly alter the landscape of gold jewelry consumption. In both countries, gold has deep religious and cultural significance. For example, both Chinese and India marraige customs involve giving the bride gold jewelry such as gold bangles or necklaces.
Gold plating is frequently used in electronics to give a anti-corrosive and conductive layer on copper in printed circuit boards and electrical connectors.
Gold is not affected by air and most reagents and is a very good conductor of heat and electricity. Heat, moisture, oxygen, and most corrosive agents have very little chemical effect on gold. This makes gold an excellent material for electrical switching mechanisms and plug contacts.