Iron is one of the oldest elements known to man in its pure form. The use of this element in it pure form has been around for about 5,000 years. The fact that iron has played a critical role in the many achievements of the human race cannot be denied. As in the past, today iron continues to play a critical role in our lives.
Iron Is Crucial In Sustaining Life on Earth
All creatures that have blood in their body require iron. The element is used in transporting blood throughout the body. It combines with oxygen in the lungs and transfers it to all other organs in the body. A lack of enough iron in human beings can lead to anemia and lower brain function. In addition, women who have low iron levels in their system are more likely to give birth to underweight babies. The lack of iron in living things can also greatly hinder their ability to perform basic tasks. In most cases, it leads to fatigue and inactivity.
A Mountain of Iron
In Russia, there is a mountain is made almost out of iron only. The mountain named Magnitnaya Mountainis thought to have contained about ten billion pounds of iron ore. This is the largest concentration of iron ore to occur naturally anywhere in the world. The existence of this is still considered an anomaly, the iron industry that developed around the area lead to the growth of one of the largest cities in Russia.
Iron Is Abundant In Space
Many meteorites that fall from space usually contain a lot of iron. In fact, in ancient Egypt, their ornaments used to be made from iron dropped from space. It is only later that this ancient kingdom began to extract iron form the earth’s crust. Up to today, most meteorites that fall to earth contain huge amounts of iron.
The Earth Has an Iron Core
Iron is officially the fourth most abundant element in our crust. In addition to that, it is believed the earth has an iron core. This iron core is responsible for magnetism on earth. It is the reason that navigation is possible on earth. Without this magnetic iron core, navigating the earth would be by the sun and other stars, which is quite difficult. The magnetism created by this iron core is al also believed to protect the earth from harmful cosmic radiation.
Iron Can Combine With Other Elements
Iron is mixed with a variety of other elements to increase its strength. Just a small percentage of an impurity in iron can drastically change its physical properties. For instance, a 2% addition of carbon into pure iron can increase its strength a thousand times. The alloy is known as steel. Steel is one of the most commonly used materials in most construction work on earth.
This is just a tip of the iceberg on facts about the most useful element on earth. Without it, most of the technological leaps in the world today might not have been possible.