Zinc is a fascinating metal in many respects. When exposed to air, it tarnishes, yet it can protect other metals from corrosion. It is an essential mineral, but in large doses can cause cancer. The following is an overview of where zinc comes from and how it can be used.
Where Does Zinc Come From?
Like most metals, zinc comes from ores in the ground that have to be mined. Extracting the zinc requires a complex process of electrolysis or heating, as well as roasting it and concentrating it. Over a million tons of zinc are produced annually worldwide, mostly from Australia, China, and Peru.
What Are Some Industrial Uses for Zinc?
By itself, the metal is used to produce zinc die castings Ontario for the following industries:
Zinc can also be combined with other metals to produce brass and other alloys. It is also used to protect other metals from rust via the process of galvanization.
What Biological Role Does Zinc Play?
Zinc is a nutrient that plays a role in your senses of smell and taste, metabolism, immune function, and wound healing. The maximum allowance of zinc recommended for adults is 40 mg per day, which most people can obtain through diet alone. Foods that contain zinc include cheese, sunflower seeds, beef, herring, and chicken.
Zinc supplements are an alternative if you do not receive enough through your diet. They are generally safe, but there may be side effects or interactions with other drugs you are taking. Excess amounts of zinc may cause cancer, and zinc administered directly into the nostrils may negatively affect the olfactory sense.
When Was Zinc First Discovered?
The Romans and Greeks were aware of zinc in ancient times. However, it was first identified as an element by Andreas Marggraf in 1746.
You may be able to recognize zinc by its blue-tinged, silver-white color.
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