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How is silver used today?Sliver has been used since ancient times to make jewelry and silverware. Today, standard silver is an alloy of 92.5% silver and 7.5% copper called sterling silver.Another ancient use of silver was to make coins. Silver has been used as money for thousands of years. Today, few coins are still made from silver because of its high cost.Silver is used in the electronics industry because of its excellent electrical conductivity. It is mostly used in high end applications where the cheaper metal copper can"t do the job. It is also used in long life batteries.Other applications for silver include mirrors, dental fillings, musical instruments, and nuclear reactors.How was it discovered?Silver was one of the first metals discovered by ancient peoples. Silver artifacts have been found in many ancient civilizations such as the Sumer from 3000 BC.Where did silver get its name?It comes from the Anglo-Saxon word "seolfor" for the element. The symbol Ag comes from the Latin word "argentum" for silver.IsotopesThere are two naturally occurring stable isotopes of silver: silver-107 and silver-109.Interesting Facts about SilverIts two stable isotopes are nearly the same in abundance, which is rare for an element.The official currency of the United Kingdom is called the pound sterling which was originally equal in value to one pound of silver.Up until the recent advancement of digital cameras, around 30% of silver production was used for photography in the compound silver nitrate. The silver compound silver iodide (AgI) is used in cloud seeding to produce rain.Silver nanoparticles are sometimes added to clothing as they can help to prevent the growth of fungi and bacteria.
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