The development of civilization has relied heavily on the discovery of metals. Prehistoric man used metals to build tools and weapons and as our knowledge of metallurgy has developed, metals have played an essential role in the advancement of agriculture, transport and arts & crafts – forging the path to today’s modern society. This infographic presents that timeline.
The above introductory comments are edited excerpts from an infographic* from makin-metals.com entitled Infographic: History of Metals Timeline.
Editor’s Note: The author’s views and conclusions in the above article are unaltered and no personal comments have been included to maintain the integrity of the original post. Furthermore, the views, conclusions and any recommendations offered in this article are not to be construed as an endorsement of such by the editor.
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Other Infographics of Interest:
Iron ore is now the world’s second largest commodity market after oil and is essential for developing nations to build infrastructure and to modernize accounting for 95% of all metal produced annually. [As I can personally attest to from my recent 29 day trip throughout mainland China, it is no surprise that] China’s rapid industrialization in the last decade…is responsible for all the growth in steel consumption since 2000…placing a huge strain on the global iron supply and pushing iron exploration into untapped regions of the world. Although the price of iron price rose steadily until peaking in 2011 (it has softened as of late), the long-term outlook is strong. Learn more in this informative infographic.
Copper is one of the most widely used metals on the planet, and has been for more than 10,000 years. Today, it’s the nervous system of our society – of our cities, homes, tools and toys. The simple truth is that the western lifestyle is completely dependent on copper. Here’s why as depicted in the infographic below.
While best known for its use in the five cent coin, nickel has far more strategic uses. Nickel can be alloyed with other metals to create truly extraordinary materials – such as stainless steel which now accounts for more than half of all nickel consumed. China’s stainless steel consumption has increased 1625% in the last 10 years and is now the largest demand driver for nickel worldwide accounting for 40% of global totals. There’s still a lot more room for growth in the industry and nickel’s diversified supply is expected to keep prices stable, so the savvy investor should look for low cost nickel projects in safe jurisdictions. Check out the infographic below for more insights.
Manganese is the 4th most traded metal in the world, mainly because it is indispensable in the production in steel and other alloys. The fastest growing sector, however, is in the use of manganese oxides for use in batteries and particularly rechargeable lithium ion (lithiated manganese dioxide or LMD) batteries. LMD batteries are ideal for applications that require high levels of power all at once such as power tools and now electic and hybrid vehicles. Take a look at the infographic presented here to learn about the important role manganese will play in our future.
Global consumption of natural graphite has doubled in the last 10 years and will increase even more so in the next decade due to a) the continuing modernization of China, India and other emerging economies given the strong demand from traditional end uses such as the steel and automotive industries and b) the advent of new applications for graphite such as lithium-ion batteries, fuel cells, and nuclear and solar power. As a result of such increased demand prices for large flake, high purity graphite (+80 mesh, 94-97%C) have more than doubled making the mining of such a minerals increasingly profitable. Learn even more by viewing the infographic below.
Demand for lithium-ion (li-ion) batteries over the next 8 years – for use in electric and hybrid cars, smart power grids and mobile consumer devices – is going parabolic. Sales of electic/hybrid cars, for example, will be increasing 5-fold to 4,000,000 over that timeframe and every such car will have 30-110kg of graphite in their batteries, depending on the car, that can not be replaced economically. Forget the common refrain “Got gold?” A more appropriate refrain should be “How much graphite stock do you own?” Learn more about graphite in the infographic below.
Tens of billions of dollars per year are being spent worldwide on graphene research. Why? Because graphene could have a dramatic impact on our future by changing the fields of computing, energy, materials and optics. How? By making everything smaller, stronger and more ecologically sustainable. Below is an infographic that provides all the details.
This infographic looks at the primary uses for vanadium, its supply and demand, and future applications that could potentially affect the metal’s demand.
Tungsten is unique in its extremes. It’s extremely hard, heat resistant, dense, and environmentally benign. It’s used to make cemented carbide, one of the strongest and most durable compounds. That’s the positives. but, unfortunately there are negatives too. Take a look at the infographic below for more information.
95-97% of the supply of Rare Earth Elements (REE) – integral to the high-technology, nanotechnology, hybrid automotive, aerospace and defence industries – currently comes from China. China has continued to reduce its export quotas to the point where it will only be supplying 50% of the world’s needs by 2015. This will have a major impact on prices for each of the 17 Light (LREE) and Heavy (HREE) elements that comprise the category – and the products in which they are used – unless alternate sources of supply are found. A Canadian company has done just that and will be bringing one of the largest HREE resources in the world (44% HREE, 56% LREE) into production by 2017. Below is an infographic on the REE market and a link to a Proactive One 2One Investor Forum presentation I attended on REE market fundamentals and the development and prospects of Quest Rare Minerals Ltd. and their Strange Lake project.
China and India are about to drive diamond demand through newly affluent population. In the world diamond retail market, Asia in 2005 made up 23% of purchases. In 2020, they will make up 57%! Such growth in diamond demand should make for a sparkling future for those who invest prudently. In the infographic and copy below you will learn all about diamonds.
Natural resources are the building blocks of the world, essential to progress and prosperity. These commodities, like all investments, can have wide price fluctuations over time. The interactive table provided shows the ebb and flow of commodity prices over the past decade and illustrates the principle of mean reversion—the concept that returns eventually move back towards their mean or average. [Take a look.]
With demand rising and supply under pressure, the outlook for investment in physical platinum and palladium is compelling. What are they used for? Where are they produced? What is the global supply/demand for each? Learn the full story from the infographic below. Read More »
The price per metric tonne of antimony has gone up 700% in the last decade and is expected to rise 5% annually to $20,000/tonne by 2020 at which time global reserves should run out. There is only one antimony mine in production in North America and the company is listed on the TSX.V Read More »
You probably picture a diamond when you think of a white gemstone. Although diamonds are beautiful and traditional, you may want to consider a less expensive alternative. Check out the infographic below which tells you all about the various alternatives complete with the pros and cons of each.
This infographic, part one in our 2014 Gold Series, introduces the yellow metal and tells the story of how it became the most sought after metal on earth. Read More »
17. Part 2: Where On Earth Is the World’s Gold?
Within the planet’s crust, there is only 1 gram of gold for every 250 tonnes (550,000 lbs) of earth. Gold’s rarity means that finding economic deposits is extremely difficult. To understand how gold mining and supply work, we must first unearth how gold deposits form. This infographic, part two in our 2014 Gold Series, covers the full supply picture behind the yellow metal. Read More »
18. Part 3: China’s Role in the Future of Gold
In this infographic we look at how gold growth in China will impact the future of the precious metal. In Q4 of 2011 and continuing into 2012, China has bought more gold overall than even India and will continue to play an important role in consumption.
This is Part 4 of an excellent 5-part series of infographics (links to the previous 3 are provided below) on various aspects of gold. Read More »
This is the final installment of our 5-part 2014 Gold Series. With input from some of the most important names in gold, such as Brent Cook, Doug Casey, Frank Holmes, Bob Moriarty and James Fraser, it covers gold trends that investors should be watching for through the rest of the year and beyond. Read More »
Is gold a commodity or currency? How does it behave as an investment? What are the fundamentals of investing in gold? What are the different ways investors can get exposure to gold in their portfolios? The answers to these questions and many others are answered in this latest infographic from Visual Capitalist.
Wars have been fought over gold, love has been expressed by it an gold has changed the landscape of civilizations and the world – but what makes gold so great? This infographic examines the history of gold from ancient history to the gold rushes of the centuries ago. It looks at its properties and how it became not only a currency, but the gold standard.
From ancient times to the famous gold rushes, gold was first discovered in placer deposits….Today, however, most gold comes from hard rock deposits where gold is disseminated or associated with other metals and mined either through open pit or underground mining. This infographic tells (shows) you everything you need to know about gold mining and its supply from around the world.
The infographic below on vaulted gold explains what vaulted gold is and visualizes key facts relating to investments in gold that is stored on behalf of investors in high-security vaults.
Gold-producing countries are found on nearly all continents, and represent the gamut of economies from developed super-powers to small, emerging market countries. With gold’s spectacular rise in price and related demand, it’s worth your time to know a little bit about where all the gold comes from.
Measuring market data using fiat currencies can be misleading. Even though an asset may rise in dollars, it may be because of declining currency value rather than true economic process. With central banks devaluing currency at record rates, gold’s steady purchasing power makes it an ideal alternative pricing mechanism. Read More »
How rare is gold? Where are the world’s gold reserves located? What is the cost of mining gold? Which continent is the most economic at mining gold? What is the future of mining gold? This infographic has the answers. Read More »
Most of us just throw away gold without knowing it. Here’s an interesting infographic…that shows how much gold is in our garbage. Read More »
The Gold Tree Infographic below visualizes above-ground stock, sources and uses of gold and pictures the different forms of gold investments – ranging from physical gold in the form of bullion gold to securities not backed by gold.
While it is true that there have been some hiccups along the way, such as Roosevelt’s confiscation of gold in 1933, it is unlikely that America’s fixation on gold will end any time soon. Below are the facts regarding the history of gold in the USA. Read More »
In recent years, the production of fake silver and gold bullion products has been on the rise and the following post will show you how to detect such products and avoid the major financial loss that would occur in doing so. Read More »
While gold remains a smart move, there’s much to be said for silver. Why? Because, unlike gold, silver has an inherent value that goes well beyond scarcity. Without silver the world as we know it would literally stop. The computer screen on which you are reading these words, has silver in it. The TV you watch, has silver in it…and the list goes on and on. Read More »
Silver has had double digit gains in 7 of the last 10 years. In this infographic, we look at the investment properties of silver as well as its chief differences with gold. Highlights include a study on silver correlation, volatility, performance against the US Dollar and money supply, and portfolio diversification.
Of the 1040.6 million troy oz of silver produced in 2011, 84% was used in over 10,000 modern industrial applications (16% used as an investment) of which approx. 33% was used in the traditional forms of fabrication such as jewelry, coins, medals, and silverware with the remaining 66% actually being consumed. While the actual amount is unknown, some experts believe as much as 90-95% of all the silver ever mined has been ‘lost’ to landfills. For this reason, there is likely less silver available above ground than gold (98% of all gold is accounted for today). For more interesting information regarding the supply of, and demand for, silver please refer to the infographic below.
35. Part 1: The History of Silver As a Currency – and More
Silver has thousands of industrial uses and is considered a store of wealth by investors. The infographic below illustrates silver’s history as a currency in the past and as an essential component in industry and technology today.
Silver has a reputation for being gold’s less desirable sister, but make no mistake, silver may still be a golden opportunity to invest in. Silver’s use is already very prevalent in the photography, consumer electronics, medical, and high tech industries and a major consumer of silver in the future will be the green technology sector in products such as solar cells and batteries. Read More »