June 20, 2024

Magical Properties Of Silver Showcased By New Products

New uses for silver in industrial and medical products have expanded rapidly in recent years.  The almost magical properties of silver in a wide range of new applications is highlighted by The Silver Institute in this month’s issue of Silver News.

Scientists at the California Institute of Technology have discovered a way to use silver to produce a super tough “metal/glass” that combines the best properties of glass and metal.  The high tech process uses silver and a mixture of other compounds.  The resulting super tough metal glass will have applications in medical implants and is far superior to existing products.  Besides being stronger the new metal/glass could reduce infections due to the anti bacterial properties of silver.

Jewelry makers continue to explore new products using silver to replace higher priced gold.  An alloy of platinum and silver, known as Platinaire, is becoming popular.  Platinaire is made with 92.5% silver and 5% platinum and resists tarnishing, is harder than silver and less expensive than gold.

The Silver Institute also explains how specially prepared silver nanoparticles are used as sensors to detect pathogens.  Scientists discovered a way to utilize the optical properties of silver in this process and at the same time prevent the silver from killing the bacteria being identified.

Another new product highlighted by The Silver Institute is a new FDA approved face mask that uses embedded silver particles to kill micro organisms.  The new mask effectively blocks the dangerous staph bacteria and a wide range of other bacteria, thus providing superior protection to health care workers.  The new masks are double the price of traditional face masks but provide a much higher level of protection.

Silver’s use in fighting bacteria seems to be finding an unlimited number of uses.  According to The Silver Institute, researchers at the North Carolina State University are coating surgical implants with silver to prevent infection.

It turns out that silver also has properties that allow oil companies to clean petroleum wastes using a silver based solution.  Silver based liquids have a wide range of use in the chemical industry and their use is projected to grow rapidly.

In another unique application of silver’s germ fighting abilities, The Silver Institute reports that researchers at the University of Wisconsin have found a way to apply silver to wounds by using a rubber stamp.  The method allows silver to be used in precise amounts and takes just seconds to apply to a wound.  The process is still in the animal testing phase but promises to eventually have wide applications in human medicine.