Taiwan… Rich by 250 TONS!!!

The symbol Au (from its Latin name aurum) and atomic number 79 is found in the compound of our beloved metal, gold.  Throughout history, it’s been adored through usage of monetary exchange, jewelry, food decoration, sculptures, and other arts.  Gold occurs as nuggets or grains in rocks, in veins and in alluvial deposits; dense, soft, shiny and the most malleable and ductile matter known in history.  The purest of gold holds a bright yellow colour, as is the most desirable choice, but comes along in two other varieties: rose-gold and white-gold, which many have been mistaken for silver.

This precious metal, dissolves in mercury, forming amalgam alloys, however does not react with it; is insoluble in nitric acid, (which will dissolve silver), and is the basis of the [gold] refining technique, or “inquartation and parting.”

One single gram may be flattened into one square meter sheet, or an ounce, into 300 square feet.  Transformed into a light and thin gold leaf, is beaten thin enough almost into transparency.  The metal is a good conductor of heat and electricity, as it is not easily affected by air; however, heat, moisture, oxygen, and other [corrosive] agents hold little to no chemical effect on gold, allowing it to be appreciated as jewelry and other forms of art.

Quoted from wikipedia.org,

“…  gold is very dense, a cubic meter weighing 19300 kg.  By comparison, the density of lead is 11340 kg/m³, and that of the densest element, osmium, is 22610 kg/m³.”

Today, gold holds medical purpouse.  People with arthritis or rheumatoid arthritis, get gold injected to keep from swelling and pain.  Other such use have been found in orthodontic practice, such as tooth restoration, crowns and permanent bridges.  This is made possible due to its slight malleability facilitating the creation of a superior molar mating surface with other teeth.

Found in 2600 BC in Egyptian hieroglyph, it states Pharaoh Tushratta of the Mitanni claiming gold to be “more plentiful than dirt.”

In many a jewelry exchange or store, one may find as with pearls, clients “biting” the material to test its authenticity as it being a soft metal, as indicated by its score on the Mohs’ scale of mineral hardness.  However, paint lead may cheat this system of test as it is softer than the metal itself, though has a potential or risking lead poisoning.

Since the 1880s, South Africa has been the largest source accounted for the world’s gold supply, with averaging of 50% produced having derived from South Africa.  Production in 1970 accounted for 79% in world supply, equaling to 1,000 tonnes; and 2007, only a mere 272 tonnes.  This decline derived from the difficulty of extraction, volatile market (of the industry), and tightened safety auditing.

1USD (U.S. Dollar) = 8 HKD (Gambi, Hong Kongs currency)

Other major producers include the following countries: United States, Australia, China, Russia and Peru.  The ocean holds a significant amount of this precious metal, but in very low concentrations (perhaps 1–2 parts per 10 billion).

average gold mining and extraction costs are $238 (USD) per troy ounce, however fluctuates on mining type and ore quality.

Gold’s price per gram in HKD, or Gambi. Currency: 1USD (U.S. Dollar) = 8 HKD (Gambi, Hong Kong’s currency)

There is still a rich reserve of gold lying in the Jinguashi district in northern Taiwan worth more than NT$200 billion, estimates some mining experts.

There is still a rich reserve of gold lying in the Jinguashi district in northern Taiwan worth more than NT$200 billion, estimates some mining experts.

There is an enormous rich reserve of gold lying in the Jinguashi district in northern Taiwan worth more than what experts extimate to be: NT$200 billion ($1.00 USD = $33.25 NTD).  One may find in Jinguashi (meaning “Gold Melon Stone” in Mandarin) the recently revived public interest due to Discovery TV channel’s documentary broadcast of the once glittering business and gold rush from early last century.

Listed as one of the experts conducted in the long research of gold mining near Keelung City of Taipei County, is NTU’s (National Taiwan University) Science and Technology Professor, Yu Ping-Sheng.  According to Yu and his fellow researchers, Jinguashi may hold up to 250 metric tons of gold, emerging once more as a safe haven for investors of current global economic recession.  Though the mining business has dramatically decreased due to safety concerns, the rediscovered Jinguashi has attracted flock of tourists to the island.

One of the major attractions include a giant gold brick, weighing a hefty 220 kilograms at one display at the museum.  In the area, tourists observe the now-defunct mining pits and tunnels, and the lineup of restaurants and tea houses at the Jinguashi district, bringing a boost to the recent downfall of Taiwan’s economy.  Certain areas of the decades long mining rights have been expired last year ( 2008 ) and is currently under view by the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) for a possible extension.

With the help of modern technologies and equipment, investors believe the mines are worth tapping a rise in gold investments.  A government-owned Taiwan Sugar Corp., holding ownership of the largest mass of land in Taiwan, is in progress to prospect and exploit in likely cooperation with foreign partners with equal sharing profits.  With the government maintaining a conservative attitude, the Taiwan Sugar Corp. has declined three previous applications for the new venture.  According to the company, their interest is to increase tourism to the island as well as bring a great turn-around to the Taiwanese economy, in hope will simultaneously boost employment with its progress.

Museum of Gold, located in Jinguashi of Keelung City, Taipei County, Taiwan.

Museum of Gold, located in Jinguashi of Keelung City, Taipei County, Taiwan.

If you are currently in Taiwan, I highly recommend taking the time (perhaps even during the C.N.Y. holiday period) to visit the area.  Visit this website (available in English and Mandarin) for a how-to visit, it lists transportation and directions to the area.

In the area, there are much recommended to-go sites, temples and mountain trails, such as: Nanya (the northernmost scenic spot of the Northeast Coast), Bitou Cape (known for its sea-carved caves, platforms, 120 meter lighthouse, and other eroded landforms that can be seen along the cliffs of the cape), Changren Tunnel No.3 flue pipe (the flues are about two meters high and one and a half meters wide, full of large quantity of secondary minerals abandoned when Taiwan Metals Mining Corp. closed down however still recognized today as one of the longest flue in the world), Jinguashi Shinto Shrine (also referred to as “Mountain God Shrine,” dedicated to the three deities of “ôkuninushinomikoto, kaneyamahikonomikoto and sarutahikonomikoto), Teapot Mountain, Yin-Yang Sea, Gold Waterfall – all only to name a few.  It is worth the visit and adventure.

Interesting Facts About Gold:

Gold was money in ancient Greece. The Greeks mined for gold throughout the Mediterranean and Middle East regions by 550 B.C., and both Plato and Aristotle wrote about gold and had theories about its origins. Gold was associated with water (logical, since most of it was found in streams), and it was supposed that gold was a particularly dense combination of water and sunlight.  (source: only gold)

From atsbullion.com:

Gold is so ductile that an ounce of gold can be stretched to a length of over fifty miles or beaten into a sheet to cover a hundred square feet.

Precious metals are measured in troy ounces. This comes from the French town of Troyes where this unit of measurement was first used. A troy ounce is approximately 10% heavier than an avoirdupois ounce.

Gold bars were made as early as 4000 BC.

75% of all gold ever produced has been extracted since 1910. It has been estimated that all the gold in the world that has ever been refined would form a single cube 20 m (66 ft) a side.

Gold is a very dense metal with a density of 19.32 g/cm3 which gives it a very heavy atomic weight of 196.9665 g/atom, which is why solid gold jewelry is so heavy.  (source: dyjewels)

The name originates from the Old English Anglo-Saxon word ‘geolo’ meaning yellow. The Symbol Origin is from the Latin word ‘aurum’ meaning gold. Argentina was named for this precious metal. (source: facts-about)

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~ by Lan on 2008 FriUTC2009-01-09T11:57:21+00:00. 15.

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