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28 Fascinating Facts About Platinum

Leon Mege Platinum pure alloy

  1. The world’s most precious gemstones and diamonds, including the famous Hope diamond, are set in platinum.

  2. During World War II platinum was declared a strategic material and was banned in the United States for non-military use.

  3. Platinum is hypoallergenic and has many medical and dental applications. It is used for implants as well as equipment.

  4. Spanish Conquistadors named the metal Platina, Spanish for “little silver,” and thought that it was an unripe gold.

  5. Known to Europeans since the 17th century, platinum was not produced in useful quantities until technological advancements came along two centuries later.

  6. Until 1820 Colombia was the world’s only known source of platinum.

  7. Queen Elizabeth (Queen Mother for breastfeeding deprived Brits) was coronated with a platinum crown.

  8. In 2016 only 190 tons of platinum was produced worldwide, compared to 3,100 tons of gd or 1,700,000,000 tons of steel.

  9. All the platinum ever mined in the world could fit into a single room unless you live in New York where it would probably fill the whole apartment.

  10. All of the platinum ever mined until now would barely fill 300 cubic feet of space. It’s less than half of the water in a 16’x48’ swimming po. The block would weigh over 10,000 tons (compared to 190,000 tons of gd mined throughout the history, which melted down would fill 2 Olympic-size swimming pools).

  11. A Spanish vessel with cannons containing platinum alloy is wrecked somewhere in the Caribbean.

  12. There are four mines in the world producing 90% of the world’s platinum. Only one is located outside of Africa.

  13. South Africa is the world’s largest supplier of platinum, with over 70% of the global production. Russia and Zimbabwe are second and third.

  14. In 2016 Europe consumed approximately 75 tons of platinum, closely flowed by China with 63 tons. The US consumed only 35 tons.

  15. Platinum demand depends on the auto market since platinum is used primarily for catalytic converters.

  16. Roughly half of annual platinum production is used for industrial purposes, jewelry accounts for about a third of consumption.

  17. Platinum’s melting point: 3221.6°F (1772°C). Its boiling point: 6920.6°F (3827°C ). It would barely come to a boil in the middle of a sunspot, which is 7,300°F (4,000°C).

  18. Platinum density (specific gravity) is 21.45 g/cm3, heavier than gd and more than twice as heavy as silver.

  19. Platinum hardness on the Mohs scale is 4.3, which is harder than the gemstone Fluorite (4) and almost as hard as Turquoise (5).

  20. Platinum purity symbolizes the sanctity of marriage. A platinum ring owner is three times less likely to get a divorce.

  21. The first ever platinum coins were struck in Russia in 1828.

  22. In 1898, Louis Cartier started a platinum jewelry line and in 1907 introduced the world’s first platinum watch.

  23. Louis XVI of France was reported to own platinum jewelry, perhaps the very first in Europe circa 1780.

  24. Platinum is one of only six noble metals: platinum, palladium, ruthenium, rhodium, osmium, and iridium - together known as the platinum group.

  25. Platinum is malleable, strong, and highly durable, which makes it exceptionally suitable for hand fabrication. Its neutral color is ideal for setting colorless diamonds.

  26. Platinum was used by South American natives even before the 15th century, although they could not melt it.

  27. Russia was supplying the world with more than 90% of it’s platinum until platinum was discovered in South Africa in 1924.

  28. The Art Deco movement helped to propel platinum’s popularity, and starting from that period platinum became the metal of choice for the finest jewelry.

  29. If you are interested in exploring the subject of platinum please read Platinum vs. Gold