Jefferson Lab explains that platinum is a solid at room temperature; this is its most natural phase of matter. The melting point of platinum is 3,215.1 degrees Fahrenheit, and the boiling point is 6,917 degrees Fahrenheit. The reason for such high melting and boiling points is platinum's density of 21.46 grams per cubic centimeter, compared to water's density of 1 gram per cubic centimeter.Continue Reading
Live Science notes that platinum has an atomic weight of 195.084 and an atomic number of 78. Platinum, or Pt on the periodic table, has six stable isotopes in nature and three other isotopes created in laboratory conditions, according to About.com Chemistry.
Platinum is hammered into different shapes and strung into long wires. The shiny metal resists corrosion and conducts electricity, and it is made into jewelry and electrodes. Bullion.com explains that in order to make 1 ounce of pure platinum bullion, manufacturers need 10 tons of ore and 5 months of purification out of rocks. Platinum ores are found near gold and nickel deposits.
Bullion.com states that the total amount of pure platinum mined in the entire world can fit into an average-size living room. Nearly 133 tons of platinum is mined annually worldwide, compared to 1,782 tons of gold, according to Bullion.com. Ninety percent of all platinum comes from South Africa and Russia, with some deposits in the western United States. Jefferson Lab explains that before western scientists discovered the metal, it was used by pre-Columbian Indians in South America.Learn more about Geology