Uses of Gold
Most people know that gold has been used in coins, jewelry and art since before recorded history. But what is less well-known is that gold has been and still is used for many other things.
Gold has been used in medicine for a long time. In medieval Europe people thought that gold was good for your health. They thought that since gold was so pure and rare that it had to be good for you. This isn't true because gold is inert the body. This means that the chemicals in the human body cannot affect gold, therefore, it doesn't do anything while it is in the body. But gold is used successfully in dentistry. Dentists use gold to fix people's teeth.
In medieval Europe, gold leaf (very, very thin pieces of gold) were used as a decoration in food and drinks. Gold is still used in this way. Gold leaf is mostly used in gourmet sweets and drinks. As it has no taste or smell, gold is used as decoration only in food. Flakes (very small pieces) of gold are also used in some traditional European herbal drinks. Some other drinks that use gold can cost 1,000 dollars!
Gold is also used in combination with other metals. It gets mixed with these metals. The mixture is better because gold is not affected by air, moisture or corrosive chemicals such as acid. This is one reason why it is used for coins and in jewelry.
Electricity moves very well through gold. It also does not corrode, which means that it lasts a long time without being damaged by the air or chemicals. Because of these two properties, gold is used in electronics. This is the most common industrial use of gold. It is also used in wires that need to carry a lot of electricity. But gold is also used in everyday electronics such as mobile phones and computers.
Gold is also used in other ways. It is used in glass production to change the color of the glass. Gold can also be made so thin that you can see through it. Because of this, it can also be put on the glass of the cockpit (where the pilot sits) of some airplanes. When electricity is passed through the gold that is on this glass, it stops ice from forming on the glass. This type of gold plating also prevents some of the instruments in the cockpit from being damaged by radiation. Gold is also used in photography to change the colors of the photograph. It is also used in satellites, cars, CDs and space suits.
Although we mostly think of gold as being used in jewelry or for money, it is has many other uses. In the future, gold will continue to be very useful for a wide variety of purposes.