10 Most Expensive Metals in the World

Which are the ten most expensive metals in the world? And why are these metals so precious and valuable?

Is Gold one of these extravagant metals? Well, metals are used in various sectors, mainly in chemical and industrial fields, and simply because of their rarity, they are way overpriced.

Especially, Africa and China are the major producers of the world’s most precious metals.

Gold is among the list of 10 most expensive metals in the world. But, there are other expensive metals than fancy gold.

So, read more to feed your curiosity.

Quick Overview

Metals Largest Producer Price
10. Silver Mexico $0.80 per gram
9. Indium China $1-$5 per gram
8. Iridium South Africa $18.34 per gram
7. Osmium South Africa $31.1 per gram
6. Rhenium Chile $41.47 per gram
5. Gold China $57.45 per gram
4. Palladium Russia $84.81 per gram
3. Ruthenium South Africa $87.57 per gram
2. Scandium Australia $270 per gram
1. Rhodium South Africa $535.31 per gram

Most Expensive Metals

The information has been compiled through reliable sites on the web including Gold Investments, and Mining Technology.

10. Silver

Largest Producer: Mexico

Price Tag: $0.80 per gram

Probably the most common meal on earth, Silver has a price tag of $0/80 per gram.

A white, soft, lustrous transition metal, silver’s symbol is Ag, and atomic number is 47.

Besides, silver is the highest electrical, thermal conductor and reflector than the rest of the metals found on earth.

In addition, Silver is highly ductile in nature with a lower covalent bond.

Moreover, Ontario’s first geologist, Miller Willet Green, discovered silver deposits in Northern Ontario in 1902.

Silver (Source: India Mart)

Whereas most of the silvers are extracted as a by-product of gold, lead, copper, and zinc refining.

Also, silver can be easily found in its pure elemental form in the earth’s crust as an alloy with gold, and other precious minerals, metals.

Especially, everyone uses silver as a bullion coin and for the manufacturing of solar panels, jewelry, utensils, medical instruments, etc.

9. Indium

Largest Producer: China Price Tag: $1- $5/gm

Indium is a silvery-white chemical element and a post-transition metal that creates 0.21 parts per million of Earth’s crust.

Similarly, the symbol of Indium is In, and it falls under the atomic number 49.

At first, two genius German chemists, Ferdinand Reich and Hieronymous Theodor Ritcher, discovered Indium in 1836 through the use of an optical spectrometer.

Later, they named the chemical component Indium due to the appearance of an indigo blue line in its spectrum.

Indium (Source: Live Science)

Also, Indium is the softest metal on earth which is not an alkali metal.

Whereas, Indium dissolves more easily than other metals in liquid mercury and plays a huge role as a reducing agent during the oxidization process.

Especially, semiconductor industries use Indium to produce goods like alloys, solders, indium tin oxide, widely used in TV screens, mobile screens, and solar panels.

Thus, a pure Indium costs around $1- $5 per gram, making it the world’s tenth most expensive metal.

8. Iridium

Largest Producer: South Africa

Price Tag: $18.34/gram

Iridium is the eighth-most expensive metal in the world, worth $18.34/gram.

Besides, the second-densest metal on earth appears brittle with a silvery-white tint.

Most Expensive Metals
Indium (Source: Wikipedia)

Especially found abundantly in meteorites than at the earth’s crust, iridium is the most corrosion-resistant metal.

At a normal room temperature, iridium forms iridium disulfide when reacted with sulfur.

Whereas neither acids nor aqua regia can harm iridium.

An English chemist, Smithson Tennant, discovered iridium in 1803.

Similarly, Tennant named the precious metal after the Greek goddess Iris as its striking salt resembled the colors of the rainbow.

It can be obtained as a by-product from nickel refining.

Moreover, South Africa is the largest producer of the metal, trading it to several countries for creating watches, compasses, and varieties of automobiles.

7. Osmium

Largest Producer: South Africa

Price Tag: $31.1 per gram

On the seventh rank of the ten most expensive metals in the world is Osmium, with a price tag of $31.1 per gram.

The rarest earth metal with hard, dense, brittle, bluish-grayish tint, osmium’s symbol is Os, and atomic number is 76.

Especially, osmium can be found in a crystal form and gives a strong scent of osmium tetroxide.

Though osmium shows less reaction and toxicity than other metals, it is a great oxidizer.

Most Expensive Metals
Osmium (Source: India Mart)

Besides, the earth only preserves about 0.6 parts per billion of osmium, mainly obtained as a by-product through nickel refining.

British chemist Smithson Tennant discovered osmium in the left residue when aqua regia dissolved crude platinum in 1803.

In addition, osmium is twice denser than Lead.

Thus, several industries use it to produce fountain pen tips, hardest alloys, instrument pivots, electrical contacts, chemical catalysts, and needles, etc.

6. Rhenium

Largest Producer: Chile

Price Tag: $41.47 per gram

On the sixth rank of 10 most expensive metals in the world is Rhenium, with a price of $41.47 per gram.

Besides, the rarest chemical metal in the earth’s crust, rhenium’s symbol is Re, and atomic number is 75.

Similarly, the metal appears silvery gray, heavy with the third-highest boiling and melting point than the other stable elements at 5869K.

Whereas, when heated, Rhenium can be turned into a coil form.

At first, three German chemists, Walter Noddack, Ida Tacke, and Otto Berge, discovered rhenium through X-ray spectroscopy in 1925.


    Rhenium (Source: Wikipedia)

Also, rhenium was the last stable element to be discovered after hafnium.

In addition, the scientists named rhenium after the Rhine river in Europe.

Moreover, one can obtain Rhenium as a by-product of molybdenum processing.

Several industries use Rhenium to produce jet engines, tungsten, molybdenum-based alloys, lead-free high octane gasoline, and filaments in spectrographs, etc.

5. Gold

Largest Producer: China

Price Tag: $57.45 per gram

Gold is the world’s fifth most expensive metal, worth $57.45 per gram.

The world’s most familiar precious metal appears bright yellow, dense, soft, malleable, and ductile in its purest form.

Also, the relatively rare metal in the earth shows the least reaction as a chemical element.

Egyptian goldsmiths smelted down the gold at around 3600 B.C.

Most Expensive Metals
Gold (Source: Thought Co)

Moreover, it can be obtained mostly in its pure elemental native form, like in nuggets or grains in rock and alluvial deposits.

Likewise, China is the top producer of gold, producing 440 tones of gold annually.

Especially, we use golds as fine jewelry, wedding rings, in arts, gold medals, awards, and as a status of wealth.

4. Palladium

Largest Producer: Russia & South Africa

Price Tag: $84.81 per gram

The fourth most expensive metal in the world is Palladium which costs about $84.81 per gram.

Palladium is one of the rarest platinum group metals with the symbol Pd and atomic number 46.

Also, the silvery-white lustrous metal is less dense and melts at a lesser temperature than any other platinum group metal.

An English chemist, William Hyde Wollaston, discovered Palladium in 1803 and named it after the asteroid Pallas.

Most Expensive Metals
Palladium (Source: Wikipedia)

Moreover, it can be obtained as a by-product of the mining of metals such as nickel.

South Africa and Russia are the top producers of palladium in the world.

The main use of palladium is in fuel cells, dentistry, electronics, hydrogen purification, groundwater treatment, and medicine.

3. Ruthenium

Largest Producer: South Africa

Price Tag: $87.57 per gram

Ruthenium is the world’s third most expensive metal, worth about $87.57 per gram.

Most Expensive Metals
Ruthenium (Source: Wikipedia)

Besides, ruthenium falls under the platinum group, and its symbol is Ru, and its atomic number is 44.

Russian-born scientist Karl Ernst Klaus discovered the hard, white metal at Kazan State University in 1844.

Especially, it can be obtained through platinum ores, mainly in North America, South America, and the Urals.

Moreover, several industries use ruthenium to produce electrical contact alloys, jewelry, anodes for chlorine purification, instrument pivots, etc.

2. Scandium

Largest Producer: Australia

Price Tag: $270 per gram

The silvery-white metallic element’s symbol is Sc, and the atomic number is 21. It is one of the expensive metals in the world, with a price tag of $270 per gram.

When chemically oxidized with air, scandium slightly emits yellow or pink radiation.

Similarly, it dissolves at a slower rate in the acids with a dilute concentration.

Also, scandium turnings also burn into a yellowish flame when in contact with air to create scandium oxide.

A brilliant Swiss chemist, Lars Fredrik Nilson, discovered scandium in 1879 through spectral analysis of minerals euxenite and gadolinite.

Scandium (Source: Luciteria)

Whereas the name of the metal derives from the Latin word “Scandivania’.

In addition, the scarce element is found only on the deposits of rare earth and uranium compounds.

Likewise, few of the mining companies extract scandium.

Especially, aerodynamics, film, and sports industries use scandium to make equipment like golf iron shafts, mercury vapor lamps, etc.

1. Rhodium

Largest Producer: South Africa

Price Tag: $535.31 per gram

And, the world’s no.1 expensive metal is none other Rhodium, with a whopping price of $535.31 per gram.

One of the world’s extremely rare and valuable metals, rhodium is denoted by its chemical symbol Rh and atomic number 45.

Similarly, the hard, silvery-white metal is corrosion-resistant and chemically inert transition metals.

William Hyde Wollaston discovered the precious metal in 1803 and named it rhodium due to the appearance of rose colors in one of its chlorine compounds.

Most Expensive Metals
Rhodium (Source: Pinterest)

Moreover, it can be obtained from nickel platinum ores along with other valuable platinum group metals.

Further, automobile industries use 80% of the rhodium as one of the three wet-catalyst converters in automobiles.

Whereas chemical industries use rhodium for creating nitric acid, acetic acid, and hydrogenation reactions.

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