Osmium – the insider tip among the precious metals

Precious metals include a total of eight different metals. Osmium is one of them. Many may have hardly heard of this metal, because compared to common precious metals, osmium is not necessarily in the focus of investors. Nevertheless, the precious metal is worth a look because osmium is by far the rarest of the precious metals and experts predict a bright future for it in terms of its performance.

What is osmium?

Osmium is the rarest of all precious metals. Compared to gold, it is 1500 times rarer. It cannot be produced artificially and is element 76 in the periodic table. Osmium has the highest value density among precious metals, which is of great importance for storing the precious metal.

Crystalline and pure osmium

Osmium is mined in its raw form. At this point, it is a highly toxic powder, pure osmium, which is not yet usable. Only through crystallization does pure osmium become crystalline osmium.

Osmium use

Osmium was discovered only about 200 years ago. Until today, the valuable precious metal is unknown to many. But osmium is highly sought after, especially in the jewelry industry. Crystalline osmium sparkles far more than diamonds and is therefore becoming increasingly popular as a diamond substitute.

In the past, osmium was mainly needed in the production of incandescent lamps. To this day, the precious metal is used to produce high-quality ballpoint pens. In addition, osmium is playing an increasing role in medical technology due to its physical properties. For example, artificial heart valves are given an alloy of osmium, as this is particularly durable and stable.

How is osmium degraded?

In its natural state, osmium is found in powder or solid form in small quantities in various regions of the world. The precious metal is almost exclusively found only in combination with platinum, nickel or iridium. Therefore, mining is not done in special mines for osmium mining, but is done simultaneously with platinum, nickel or iridium. To obtain pure osmium, the metals must therefore first be separated.

The amount of osmium mined is usually very small. For example, in about 10,000 tons of platinum ore there is on average only about 30 g of osmium.

The main deposits of the rare precious metal are located in South Africa, South America and the Urals. Currently, the annual production volume worldwide is just over 120 kilograms.

Experts estimate that only 2 tons of the rare precious metal can be found on the entire globe. They therefore expect osmium to be completely depleted in about 10 years. The rare precious metal is therefore already very interesting as a long-term investment.




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