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Fundamentals - Precious Metals -

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(generated from captions) Ever wonder why precious metals are precious? Well, the answer lies in the periodic table. Here's Bernie Hobbs to explain.

How impressed would you be if your special someone surprised you with a bit of bling made out of tin? Or iron? Or aluminium? When it comes to jewellery, we're a shallow people. We like shiny pretty things - gold, silver, platinum at a pinch. So, how come most other metals get dull or rusty while these guys stay shiny forever?

'It's all because of where they sit on the Periodic Table. The Periodic Table lists every element in the universe - metals, gases, the lot. Everything left of here is a metal. And most metals love nothing more than reacting with oxygen.' Wet iron reacts with oxygen to form rust. Magnesium burns in oxygen to give your birthdays an extra zing. a dull coat of aluminium oxide. And shiny aluminium forms reactions are about one thing - While they look different, all these

metals getting their electrons off. 'Metals have always got whizzing around them. a spare electron or two are about off-loading them. And all their chemical reactions Oxygen's always short of electrons, at ripping them off metals.' and it's really great and metals together So putting oxygen usually. is a match made in heaven, just won't react with oxygen. Gold, silver and platinum

so they've got spare electrons. 'They're metals, But they hold on to them so tightly can't rip them free.' that oxygen just Not even a dull oxide coat. So no rust. They'll shine on forever. It's that bit of chemistry that makes them precious, and expensive. So when you're going for romance, stick with the shiny precious stuff. Nothing says "I love you" like an oxygen-proof low-reactivity transition metal.