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Iridium is the least corrosive elemental metal in the universe and thus, jewelry made of pure iridium will stay shiny for a very long time. Jewelry makers have always been seeking out precious metals that are less corrosive than gold, silver and platinum.

Iridium jewelry is currently available from only one company, Smithson Tennant, which produces iridium rings in both a solid form and an alloy of platinum and iridium called platinum-iridium (also known as 90:10 platinum-iridium or 95:5 platinum-iridium). In their solid form, iridium has a yellowish cast, like unplated white gold. In the alloy, it is brighter and harder, making it more resistant to scratches and dents.

To create an iridium wedding ring, the jewelry maker starts with a piece of pure iridium. If the iridium is not in the desired shape, it can be shaped using methods such as melting & casting, extruding and forming wire or by rolling sheets/foil around a metal or ceramic bar, removing the bar to leave an Iridium tube and cutting rings from the tube.

Iridium is usually mixed with other metals to make it harder, but it can be melted in its pure state for jewelry use. Its hardness and resistance to scratches makes it a desirable alloy partner for platinum. Platinum-iridium jewelry is a popular choice for many people. Some people who have allergies to base metals such as copper are allergic to platinum alone, so choose a platinum ring that is alloyed with other metals, such as iridium or palladium.

    By admin