Gold is one form of exchange that people have agreed upon worldwide, since it was discovered. That shiny metal around your neck has been used to barter for centuries.
An Investment OpportunityGold is often seen as an alternative when the bull retires and the bear market comes out. A recent retreat in U.S. Ten Year Treasury yields created a slight increase in the price of gold.
The Cost of GoldThe price of gold fluctuates daily. It is dependent on several factors. To name a few: the value of the U.S. dollar, the demand for gold, and the amount of gold held in central bank reserves.
Gold in ComputersGold is used in computers and most electronics because of its electrical conductivity. Electricity can easily flow through it without resistance. In addition, gold accurately transmits digital information from one computer component to another.
The other advantage of gold is it’s malleable. It can be drawn into wires and hammered into sheets easily. Gold doesn’t tarnish like other metals.
The Value of Your Laptop’s GoldIt would take the gold in roughly 7,500 computers to equal a kilo of gold. That’s because each computer contains only about 0.2 grams of gold. A laptop contains roughly 0.006 grams. Depending on the price of gold, that means each computer contains around $12 worth of gold, while the value of the gold in a laptop comes to about $6.
Smartphones and GoldSmartphones use small amounts of gold. That’s because they also need the conductivity that gold offers.
The stability of gold is another factor here. Smartphones get beat up in day-to-day use, but gold is the most stable atom. It remains gold even in the harshest conditions.
The Value of Your Smartphone’s GoldA smartphone contains roughly 0.034 grams of gold. Depending on the price of gold, that equates to about $1.83 per phone.
Gold and DentistryAlthough dental gold is slightly different than what’s wrapped around your wrist, there are many reasons that dentists prefer and use gold. For one, gold holds up to chewing. When you’re chewing, it doesn’t chip or crack. That’s because it’s flexible.
The Value of that Old CrownThere’s value in high-grade dental gold. High grade is 73 to 84 percent pure gold. A crown uses approximately one-tenth of an ounce. This makes it worth around $40 to $50, depending on current gold prices.
Space ExplorationNASA uses gold in its aerospace program. Here, using gold goes beyond the need for a stable conductor. Gold is also used to coat polyester film in many parts of a space vehicle. The film helps stabilize the temperature of the spacecraft by reflecting infrared radiation.
Because of the vacuum of space, organic lubricants would break down. Because of the intense radiation, these lubricants wouldn’t hold up in Earth’s atmosphere. The solution is gold, which can be used as a lubricant because gold molecules can slip past each other under friction’s force.
The Gold Circling Our PlanetThere are hundreds of satellites orbiting Earth. And these satellites are worth their weight in gold. It’s estimated there are seven-and-a-half million kilograms of gold circling our planet. Depending on gold prices, that’s over three billion dollars worth of gold. Yet, interestingly, most of those satellites no longer work.
Precious in Many WaysGold goes beyond that wedding band on your finger. From computer components to putting man on the moon, it has many uses. And depending on what gold is worth on any given day, grandma’s mouth may be worth a lot of money.
Gold has come a long way since the Spanish crossed the ocean to the new world. It will be fascinating to see its future.