Gold's Glittery Rewards

Gold has properties that make it valuable not only for jewelry but also for electronics and other uses.

By Sarah Webb, 00:00 AM February 5, 2007

We all recognize gold, from the yellow sparkle of a chain necklace to the shiny coating on a DVD player's video and audio plugs.

This delicate, crystallized gold specimen was found in Leadville, Colorado.

This delicate, crystallized gold specimen was found in Leadville, Colorado.

© Denis Finnin/AMNH

Gold is a metal. It conducts electricity, and it can be shaped into sheets, long wires, or rings. Gold is an element—a substance made of one kind of atom. As an element, gold has its own square on the periodic table of chemical elements.

Gold also represents beauty a...

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