10 things to know about Rio Olympic medals

Source:Xinhua Published: 2016/8/4 14:28:32

Gold, silver and bronze are what Olympic dreams are made of. However, the medals for the Rio 2016 Olympics do not stop with the three metals. As only three days left for the start of the Rio Olympics, we offer the 10 things you must know about the medals, a combination of art and science.

1. A team of about 100 people, including sculptors and machine operators, have been working in the Brazilian Mint to produce a total of 5,130 medals for the Rio 2016 Olympics and Paralympics.

2. In factory, the medal mold is struck by a press machine with 550 tons of force for three times in order to create perfect symbols of victory.

3. The medals, each weighing 500 grams, are mostly made of silver. The gold medal, for example, contains 494 grams of silver and just 6 grams of the precious yellow metal.

4. According to the Brazilian Olympics Committee, around 30 percent of the silver used in the medals is recycled waste from leftover mirrors and X-ray plates. About 40 percent of the copper used in the bronze medals are from waste at the national mint itself.

5. At current price, an Olympic gold medal awarded at the Rio games is worth about 600 US dollars.

6. Statistics from the Olympics Studies Center show that since the year of 1896, gold medals are traditionally made with gilt silver. The last Olympics to offer 100 percent gold medals was the 1912 games in Stockholm, Sweden.

7. Also, the ribbons that will hang around the necks of the world's best athletes are woven with recycled plastic from old bottles.

8. Paralympics medals will contain tiny steel balls, which help visually impaired athletes to identify the type of medal by shaking them and listening to the noise.

9. On the face of each medal is still the traditional laurel leaf and Rio 2016 logo. The reverse side of the medal displays an etching of Nike, the goddess of victory in Greek mythology.

10. Each medal comes with a sustainably sourced wooden box with the Rio 2016 logo.

Posted in: Olympics

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