Here are the ten most read articles on this metals blog during the past year. Over a quarter of a million people viewed our metals blog this year. Take a look below and read the ones you missed. Some of them are a bit dated, but are still useful and tens of thousands found them still of great interest.
1. Is There Any Such Thing as Black Gold?
Black gold is a more recent trend in the jewelry business. We are not talking about oil — also known as Texas Tea to vintage television fans – but that shiny valuable precious metal. If someone comes into your cash-for-gold shop looking to sell black gold, be aware. There’s no such thing. There is plenty of jewelry on the market that looks like it is made from black gold, and plenty of sellers on the internet advertising their black gold pieces, but black gold is not a natural metal. Read more >
2. How Gold Plating is Done, Step by Step
Gold plated – sometimes called electroplated – items are made with a layer of gold on the surface over another type of metal underneath. On some occasions, items are gold plated to try and fool buyers or cash-for-gold operators. But for the most part, plating is done to enhance the look or wearability of a piece of jewelry. Gold plating is an easy technique, but before beginning the process, make sure your plater follows the best practices for best plating results. Read more >
3. Introducing…Nihonium, Moscovium, Tennessine, and Oganesson
Four new elements discovered last year and known only by their numbers have been given names, completing the seventh row of the periodic table. Read more >
4. Platinum Group Metal Recovery from Spent Catalytic Converters Using XRF
To avoid considerable financial losses, companies need to quickly and accurately determine the contents of Pt, Pd, and Rh in spent catalytic converters at the collector’s site or in the refineries. But there is no technique for analyzing non-homogeneous materials like catalytic converters directly without sample preparation. Read more >
5. Metal Strength and Stiffness: What’s the Difference?
The steel industry is one of the largest in the world and is integral to numerous adjacent industries such as construction, transportation, energy, and manufacturing. Steel is widely-used for its strength, but it must also meet certain requirements for stiffness, depending on the end product it is used to make. The terms stiffness and strength are often confused. Read more >
6. What Is Stainless Steel? Part I
“Stainless” steel is actually a generic term referring to a variety of steel types. Like all other kinds of steel, stainless steel is made primarily from iron and carbon in a two-step process. What makes stainless steel different is the addition of chromium (Cr) and other alloying elements such as nickel (Ni) to create a corrosion-resistant product. Read more >
7. How Is It Made? An Infographic of the Iron and Steel Manufacturing Process
Steel production is a 24-hour-a-day, 365-day-a-year process, dependent on a consistent supply of raw materials and huge amounts of energy. High demand for iron ore, coke and scrap steel, increasing energy costs, and industry consolidation have prompted steel producers to develop new methods for gaining efficiency to remain competitive. The production methods using raw materials have improved significantly over the past decade, and scrap-based production is accounting for a larger portion of the total steel supply. Read more >
8. A Snapshot of the World’s Rarest Metals
In this blog we sometimes talk about rare earth metals, which as you may know are not actually rare but so named because they are difficult and costly to extract. Here we’ll discuss a few actual rare metals (including tantalum, tellurium, and rhenium), present in the earth in miniscule amounts but which have important applications nonetheless. Read more >
9. Buyer (and Seller) Beware…. Fake Gold Hitting Pawn Shops and Jewelry Stores
The livelihood of businesses that buy and recycle gold, such as jewelry stores and pawn shops, depends in part on being able to identify fake gold and to determine the accurate karat (K) weight of gold jewelry. With the volatility and high price of gold, failing to detect just a small variation in composition can be an expensive mistake. Even the seemingly simple task of distinguishing between gold plating and solid gold can be a challenge as counterfeiters become more adept. Read more >
10. Platinum Group Metals Connect: Electronics Applications
The versatile platinum group metals (PGMs)—platinum, palladium, rhodium, iridium, ruthenium and osmium—can be found in products we use every day, such as catalytic converters, drugs and medical devices, and many, many electronic devices. Read more >