Sliver Element Number 47 Ag

 Ultra Pure  Silver crystals and Native Silver crystals

Silver is a well known element, used in many applications. Silver has some records in the element world, as it has the  highest electrical and thermal conductivity of any metal. Silver is found in ores, and also can be found in pure form in nature.

Most people would relate Silver to coinage,  jewelry,  and Silver-ware, as Silver was used as a coin standard, and used in solid and plated Silver table items. Silver has been used for coins well before the Roman Empire. The Romans used Silver for table ware, coins, mirrors, and other items. Spain exploited Silver in the "new world"  and many tons had been sent to Spain on ships in coin and bullion form. Strict Assay standards were enforced by the Spanish, and the reale became a global trade standard. The  US dollar was based on the Spanish silver coins. Pirate treasure would have been stolen Spanish coins en route to Spain. I was living in Key West at the time Mel Fisher discovered the famous Atocha wreck, yielding Silver bars and coins of amazing quantity.

silver has many other uses, photography was a major use, but somewhat declined with digital technology. Silver has a big use as electrical contacts, and other electronics. As a medical use,  I once received a bandage with Silver material because of its antibacterial traits, not surprising  the large unused portion of the bandage leftover was kept by the doctors office. Silver also has other medical applications.

Silver can be used for optics and mirrors, textiles, neutron absorption, and catalysts. Silver is used in solder, batteries and other cool stuff.

There are many compounds of silver, I have a Silver amalgam filling which is created with Mercury. Silver Nitrate can make neat Silver formations if left undisturbed for a while. Silver Iodide is used to try "cloud seeding" to make it rain.

These Spanish and Mexican 8 reales coins are .901 silver. These coins were the standard in the 1600's to the 1800's. These are the coins pirates were chasing around. Many of these have "chop marks' or tiny punch marks into the coin, these were made by Asian merchants testing the silver. The holes punched into the coins have a historic story as well. If you received one coin as pay for a month of work, it needed to be secure. Workers would punch a hole and lash the coin to their body to keep it safe. This is quite the pirate hoard for my son.

 Ag 47  AW:107.90550  D:10.7  MP:3567  BP: 6683  Mohs 6.0

Cadmium Element Number 48 Cd 

 Pure Cadmium sticks, these are common fare for collectors and research.

Cd  48  AW:112.411  D:8.65  MP:609  BP:1413  Mohs:2.0 

Cadmium Is a blueish silver metal that is very soft, and ductile. Cadmium is far less abundant than Zinc, generally Cadmium is a byproduct of Zinc refining. Cadmium is found in Zinc ores, in very insignificant amounts, one mineral with Cadmium is sphalerite. Cadmium is a toxic metal, and can cause kidney problems as well as other health issues. Cadmium is found in coal, and thus found in pollution from coal soot.

Cadmium was used  in massive amounts for galvanizing steel, barbed wire, sheet steel, and for an very brief time, used as a coating for canning vegetables, until heath issues were discovered from the Cadmium coating. Zinc is far more abundant than Cadmium, and less toxic, therefore galvanized materials are usually coated with Zinc these days.

Cadmium is used in other industries, rechargeable Ni Cd batteries are still popular, but have competition from Lithium rechargeable. Cadmium can absorb neutrons and is used to control nuclear fission in certain types of reactors

Cadmium compounds are useful in solar technology,  as Cadmium-Telluride. Paint pigments can be produced with Cadmium compounds, bright yellows and reds, but remember this metal is toxic. Cadmium Oxide is used in television screens as a phosphor.

Cadmium is found in some low melting solders, brazing materials,and alloys. Cadmium was once used to define the meter using the red spectral line. Cadmium is produced in the s-process (slow process) in stars 1 to 10 times our sun in mass.