Platinum is a heavy, precious, grey-white transition metal that can be forged and stretched easily. It is noncorrosive and is used in the manufacture of jewellery. Like the other five platinum-like metals palladium, rhodium, iridium, ruthenium and osmium, platinum is found in nature.

Platinum is a heavy metal that is corrosion-proof, forgeable and soft like copper. Hydrogen, oxygen and other gases are bound by it in the activated state. Because of its high durability, its resistance to tarnishing, and its rareness, platinum is ideal for the manufacture of high-quality jewellery.


Detailed information about platinum alloys
(incl. melting point, freezing point and specific weight)
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Platinum is insoluble in hydlochloric acid and nitric acid. It is corroded by hot aqua regia and produces the red-brown hexachloro-platinum(IV) acid. It can also be corroded by alkaline, peroxide, nitrate, cyanide and other molten salts. Platinum can be alloyed with many metals like iron, nickel, copper, cobalt, gold, tungsten, gallium, tin, etc. It must be noted that platinum reacts with hot sulphur, phosphorus, boron, silicium and carbon in any form, also in gases of hot flame. Many oxides react with platinum too. Only specific materials can be used for melting pots. For example, when melting platinum with propane-oxygen, a neutral, or only slightly oxidizing flame, must be used. The best method is the non flammable electrical induced heating of the material in zirconium oxide ceramics.

After rhodium, platinum is the second most precious metal. Its value is more than twice that of gold and more than 100 times that of silver. It is used for expensive jewellery and pens and also as a method of payment and financial investment. For these purposes it is a great advantage that it is considerably harder and mechanically more stable than gold, which is commonly used for jewellery as an alloy. The bullion coins Platinum, Canadian, Maple Leaf and American Platinum Eagle are still in circulation. The Platinumruble, coined in Russia between 1828 and 1846 was made of platinum. First, there were coins made out of approx. 10.3 grams platinum with the value of 3 Rubles. Later, coins of twice and four times that value with the respective platinum weight were added.

Fasser platinum is an alloy consisting of approx. 96% pure platinum and 4% pure palladium (melting point 1,750°C, density 20.8 g/cm³.) Jeweller’s platinum is an alloy made out of about 96% pure platinum and 4 % pure copper (melting point 1,730°C, density 20.3 g/cm³). Both alloys are commonly used in jewellery manufacture for platinum jewellery.

Platinum has normally no adverse health effects. Its compounds though should be regarded as highly toxic.

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