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Best Conductor

I often get asked this question about my Energy Rings. “Which metal is the best?”

This is a tricky question in some respects and I don’t really have a direct answer. In reference to the Energy Rings and induction coils in general, I would base my answer on the conductivity of the metal. In other words, which metal provides the best conductivity or the least resistance to the flow of electrical energy.

In this case, it is silver. Most people think of gold as being the best conductor but in reality, between copper, silver and gold, silver is the best conductor. Second is copper and gold comes in 3rd place.

The following table was taken from the Radio Amateur’s Handbook. It gives the relative resistivity of metals. In other words, the metal’s resistance to the flow of electrical energy. The higher the number, the more resistance the metal has to the flow of electrical energy. The lower the number, the less resistance, hence, a better conductor.

Material Resistivity
Aluminum 1.6
Brass 3.7-4.9
Cadmium 4.4
Chromium 1.8
Copper 1.00
Gold 1.4
Iron 5.68
Lead 12.8
Nickel 5.1
Bronze 2.8-5.4
Silver 0.94
Steel 7.6-12.7
Tin 6.7
Zinc 3.4

When these calculations were made, copper was the most commonly used material for the conduction of electrical energy. Therefore, copper became the standard. It was assigned the value of ‘one’ in the resistance table and all other metals were measured against this standard.

Another related question that comes up on this topic, is: “If copper is a better conductor than gold, why is gold used in most of today’s high end circuit boards and other electronic components?

A little research revealed that gold is used because in most high frequency electrical components, the flow of electrons takes place on the surface of the metal. Silver has a tendency to tarnish. This tarnish in silver is actually an oxide that has resistance to the flow of electrons and so reduces the conductivity. Since gold does not have this tarnishing problem, it is the better choice for long term efficiency of electrical components.

I hope you have enjoyed this article and perhaps learned something new.

Until next time,

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~ Best Conductor ~ by Isidro Nilsson ~

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