Is Gold Magnetic? – Physical gold Investigates

Is gold magnetic?

For several centuries, gold has been considered the definitive precious metal in the world. It acts as a great repository of value even today and has been used in jewellery making, coinage, investments, and several industrial applications. Its industrial users are many, owing to certain great properties that the yellow metal has.

Gold is well-known for its malleability, making it a versatile metal to use for industrial applications. At the same time, gold is also well-known for its tensile strength. This property coupled with its conductivity allows it to be used in industry for specialist wiring applications. However, the question we want to address today is “Is gold magnetic?”

Is Gold Magnetic
A large electromagnet like this can create a very strong magnetic field

Gold and the property of magnetism

Gold does not automatically fall into the category of magnetic metals. For example, if we have a large electromagnet that emits a strong magnetic field, gold is unlikely to be drawn by it. Other metals like iron will be immediately attracted by the magnetic field and will attach itself to the magnet. However, gold does not behave in this manner.


The magnetic attraction of gold jewellery

Often people are surprised when certain types of gold jewellery may suddenly behave magnetically. A dealer may have sold a large ring to you, claiming that its pure gold. However, if it is attracted by a magnet, you may be wondering is gold magnetic? No, it is a certainty that the gold is not pure. There could be iron or nickel mixed into the metal, which causes this phenomenon.

This is one of the ways in which people try to detect the purity of the gold they possess. However, we must bear in mind that even if the item of jewellery is not attracted by a magnet, it doesn’t automatically imply that there are no base metals mixed into it. Base metals such as aluminium, copper, and lead, which are frequently mixed with gold do not have any magnetic properties.

Often metals like copper and nickel are mixed into gold to create colours, which are popular amongst buyers. Also, precious metals like platinum, silver and rhodium are frequently being used by the industry to make the surface of the gold harder and scratchproof. These metals do not have any magnetic attraction properties.

Is Gold Magnetic
Tohoku University

Recent scientific developments

Although gold had always been considered a non-magnetic metal, a recent scientific discovery has put forth the possibility that gold can be magnetised through heating. But is gold magnetic? Researchers at Tohoku University in Japan discovered that by spinning the electrons and inducing heats at the same time, a small degree of magnetisation can be achieved in gold. In the experiment, a thin film of gold was used, and a magnetic field was applied in parallel with the flow of heat. Researchers believe that such discoveries can reveal the unknown properties of matter that may have useful industrial applications. It could be useful for innovative and new areas of science such as thermoelectric uses and energy harvesting.

Insider's Guide to gold and silver

Talk to the gold experts at Physical Gold

Our gold experts can assist you in identifying and assessing the purity of the gold you possess. Besides, they can help you identify the right opportunities to purchase gold for your investment portfolio. We conduct regular research on the international gold markets and can advise you on the purchase of your gold at the right time and price.

As one of the nation’s most reputed online dealers, we are also able to offer you great deals on a variety of gold products. We stock bars of different sizes and our numismatic experts can also help you with the purchase of excellent gold coins. Call us on (020) 7060 9992 or simply drop us an email and one of our investment experts will be happy to get in touch with you.


Image credits: Wikimedia Commons and Wikimedia Commons

By Daniel Fisher

Daniel Fisher formed physical Gold in 2008, after working in the financial industry for 20 years. He spent much of that time working within the new issue fixed income business at a top tier US bank. In this role, he traded a large book of fixed income securities, raised capital for some of the largest government, financial, and corporate institutions in the world and advised the leading global institutional investors. Daniel is CeFA registered and is a member of the Institute of Financial Planning.

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