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Silver Linings

Silver has been around for a lot longer than most things; in fact, Silver objects have been discovered that date back as far as 4,000 BC. It was the first metal to be used as currency, and probably through no coincidence, the words ‘Silver’ and ‘money’ are both the same in over 14 languages.

Other linguistical facts about Silver are that the word comes from the Anglo-Saxon word “siolfor”, and it is notorious for being one of the words in the English language with no possible rhyme (we know you’re trying to rhyme it now!). 

Now for the real reason you are here, three of the top uses for Silver in science:

  1. Electronics
    Silver’s main use in industry is in electronics. Its unrivalled thermal and electrical conductivity in comparison to other metals makes it very hard to replace, especially by cheaper materials, keeping it as the first choice. Silver is used in electrical switches, from light switches to industrial switches. Small quantities are also used as contacts, which determine whether the switch is on or off. You will also find Silver in plasma TVs, products that use LED and batteries, including Silver-Zinc batteries used as an alternative to Lithium batteries for laptops and electric vehicles.
  2. Solar energy
    You will find that Silver plays a big part in solar energy. Silver paste is used in photovoltaic cells in solar panels, which are responsible for producing solar energy. Silver makes for a vital component in solar panels, as it has the highest electrical and thermal conductivity of any metal. Silver also reflects the most visible light, which helps to land it another role in solar energy, that of reflecting solar energy into collectors that in turn use salts to generate electricity.
  3. Chemical production
    Silver is often used in chemical production, more precisely as a catalyst to produce the chemicals Ethylene Oxide and Formaldehyde. As a catalyst, Silver increases the speed of the reactions. Ethylene Oxide is used in the production of flexible plastics such as Polyester, and also in moulded plastics. The chemical is also a main ingredient of antifreeze. Formaldehyde is a disinfectant, an embalming agent and used as a protective coating.


For more information on Silver, or to get a quotecontact the Goodfellow team today.