Investment in silver is increasingly spurred by innovative applications in tech, transport and health
Silver has been used in currency, jewellery and cutlery for centuries. More recently, photographic film became the biggest consumer of silver.
But that’s all changing.
Silver’s use in renewable technologies and innovative industrial applications is generating new demand for investment in silver.
As a silver mining company on the ASX, Boab Metals (ASX: BML) looks forward to a greener future enabled by the ‘white metal’.
Which tech, health and industrial innovations are driving silver demand?
From sprawling solar panel fields to tiny circuit boards and medical applications that sound like science fiction, silver is deeply integrated into the modern world.
With the solar sector set to consume 888 million ounces of silver this decade, and a growing EV industry requiring 55 million ounces every year, PV’s and EV’s are undoubtedly the most significant sources of silver demand.
You can read more about that in our previous post.
But there are other applications spurring investment in silver.
Some of them might surprise you.
As the most conductive metal on earth, silver is used in semiconductor chips, printed circuit boards, CPUs, and mobile phones.
Demand for consumer technology isn’t slowing down. Since 2020, the world has been facing a shortage of semiconductors.
Almost all devices contain at least a few milligrams of silver, and there’s no viable alternative in electronics.
Like semiconductors, IoT (Internet of Things) devices use silver in electricity transfer.
With the increasing prevalence of technology in industrial applications, plus 5G infrastructure rolling out worldwide, there are more connected devices than ever coming online.
According to The Silver Institute, demand for silver in 5G technology like IoT and semiconductors will increase by 200% in a decade, reaching 23 million ounces by 2030.
Silver’s unbeatable conductivity makes it more effective than copper in high-performance wires and cables.
From recording studios to aircraft, and even in aerospace applications, silver-core cables are a proven solution for high-fidelity information transmission.
Water purification and filtration
Silver coins and containers were used to prevent bacterial infection before microbial science existed.
Things have come a long way since then.
Today, silver is an almost invisible – but entirely essential – component in food and water hygiene:
- Coating carbon water filters with silver prevents bacteria build-up
- Silver ions in water filtration carry oxygen to kill microbes
- Nano-silver coatings used in food packaging and refrigerators
- Silver-copper ions are increasingly replacing chlorine in pool filtration
Those same antibacterial properties minimise bacterial infections in certain wound types.
Silver has actually been proven to improve healing time in burns and wounds.
Medical bandages reinforced with silver stop bacteria build-up by preventing the cell from forming chemical bonds. In other words, bacteria simply fall apart when they meet silver ions.
What does this mean for silver stocks on the ASX?
Silver’s use in emerging technologies, medical applications, and renewable energy is a good sign for the future of silver investment.
We’re excited to see what happens next for two reasons. First, increased demand is expected to accelerate our growth as an ASX-listed silver mining company operating Australia’s largest undeveloped silver-lead project.
And second, as members of Australian communities and society, renewable energy innovations are a welcome sign of change.
Visit our investor centre for more information about investing in silver, or to learn more about the progress we’re making at our Sorby Hills Lead-Silver Project