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Iridium Copper


Q. I sell Toyota motorcars for a local dealership and some of the Toyota engines are touted as using iridium-tipped spark plugs. Toyota says the first tune-up (spark plug replacement) will be after 120,000 miles. I'm seeking more information about iridium. Is it a natural element or a man-made one? Is it mined and if so where? What is its cost?

Richard Moore
- Tempe, Arizona


Q. Sir, I heard about iridium copper and its functions. Would like to know what exactly they do with these materials? Why lot of speculation is going in this business?

Really is it possible that iridium copper material can pull rice grains like magnet? If it so why only it attracts rice? Why not other grains? Like to know who are the buyers? And why they buy it? What is the purpose of buying it? I would like to interact with real buyers in this connection.

Jayanth Chandra
- Hyderabad, Andrapradesh, India


A. Iridium is one of the chemical elements, and a precious metal, Richard. It is recovered as a byproduct of copper mining. It can be useful as a contact material, and apparently as a spark plug tip, and has some other engineering uses.

However, the rice-pulling nonsense is a well-orchestrated scam that works like this:

People who want to sell nearly worthless coins post anonymous messages on public forums pretending that they are interested buyers looking for same, and publicly "offering" outrageous, astronomical sums if someone will sell one to them. Then the same people, but using a different name, offer these worthless coins to people for one-third of the "buying price" they publicly posted. The suckers believe if they buy the coins, there will be a resale market for them which will allow them to recover their investment and more. After they've put out the money is when they learn, after weeks of desperate effort, that there no buyers at those publicly posted outrageous prices -- it was all a fiction to sucker them.

I know this because we repeatedly saw the same pattern and saw that the message from the eager "buyer" and the seller, although from supposedly different people, were posted from the same IP address / same computer / same person.

pic of Ted Mooney Teds signature
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey

To minimize searching and thrashing time, and to provide multiple points of view, combined several formerly separate threads into the single dialog you are now viewing. Please forgive any resultant repetition.


Q. Dear sir,

I am a businessman, I want to know about the iridium copper. I came to know about this metal, through one of my friends which he says it is very very costliest and very rare metal found in copper made coins and metal products in older days. If it is true can you kindly inform me the complete history of this metal and the way of collecting this metal and the market value and how to find this iridium?

I know for long days some business people are collecting antiques (metal products), not for their own purposes but for the business motive. I will be thankful to you if you kindly keep in touch with me until my satisfaction.

Thanking you,

- Hyderabad, Andra Pradesh, India


A. Hello Naidu!

Iridium (note the English spelling, it will make any web searches more productive) is a rare element, in the platinum family, and is NOT intentionally added to copper alloys. There may be residual traces in copper coins, as one of the sources of iridium is in the nickel/copper ores of Canada (thus sayeth the booklet "Iridium" published by International Nickel Co), but nothing worth getting excited about, and certainly not enough to make it worthwhile to extract from olde coins, even at iridium's high price. It IS added to platinum, and in fact the fabled bar that for almost two hundred years defined the length of the meter was made of 90% Pt- 10% Ir.

As a businessman, I trust you are skeptical about get-rich-quick schemes. I suspect you are being set up for a scam, and urge you to exercise proper prudence.

Two web sites with more information on the element are and

Finally, there is a superior copper alloy (rather a family of them) called beryllium copper, which uses about 2 weight percent beryllium to give it the greatest strength of any copper alloy system. There are only two manufacturers of these alloys in the West, Brush Wellman and NGK. Could your friend's source have been confused?

Good luck!

Lee Gearhart
East Aurora, New York


!! Dear Sir,

Just 2 days ago there was a guy who came to my friend's business centre & asked if he knew of any influential person in Government, and when asked details he stated that he spent Rs.9 Lakhs towards buying this metal which he said had a value of Rs.1919/- (Indian Rupees) or US $42.6 per Gram (gm) and he entered into partnership with some persons who sold the metal to Germany, and the money is being transferred out of India on 20th Feb. He stated if this transfer can be stopped, then he would pay each one of us a Crore Rupees (1 US$ = 45 Indian Rupees) as the total transaction is worth 50 plus crores.


1 Crore = 10,000,000 Rupees, 1 Lakh = 100,000 Rupees.
At Balaji's conversion rate of 45 Rupees per $1,

9 Lakhs = $20,000 US;
1 Crore = $222,222;
50 Crore = 11.11 million dollars

He stated we need to spend some amount initially. We thanked him for his kind gesture & told him that he can sit in front of any Minister's residence & they will certainly be interested in laying hands on such easy money, but, we are poor Daily Bread Earners who feel happy at a honest day's work & earnings, rather than get-rich-quick methods.

This guy again came next day morning & the evening, and when we threatened to file a nuisance case with the Police, did we finally see the last of him.

I have also heard of people showing Gold Jewellery to gullible people & tell them that they found these Jewels in ancient temple deep in the forest & give them a small bit to test out, and stating that if they can come with Rupees One Lakh or more to a specified place, they will hand over all the Jewels. In one such case 2 guys were beaten to pulp & their money taken away when they reached the specified place.

Just to caution. Unfortunate, what large scale unemployment causes people to resort to, to get rich, among other things...

V. Balaji
- Hyderabad, AP, INDIA

February 2014

A. Hi Balaji. Iridium is a precious metal. In the best of times it's not quite as valuable as 24 kt gold, but it's pretty close. Today it's only about $14 per gram, and that's for PURE iridium. Obviously an alloy which contains only a small percentage of iridium is worth much less. You were right to steer clear of this fellow; it sounds like he was a scammer.


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Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey


!! Well I have read many pages on regarding this copper iridium. I agree that it sounds like a scam, but I personally know people who have spent a handsome amount to buy copper iridium coins or plates. Question is what they will do from it? Answer lies in a counter question ... e.g.: what people do when they buy fossils, antiques, paintings and a lot of these type of things? No answer except that they sure are crazy. And when there is a demand for anything, there is a price they are willing to pay. And the price for this copper iridium metal is certainly high because more and more people are dreaming about owning it.

In India people are more superstitious then logical. They think this metal has some divine power of God. Due to this region this metal has become an object associated with their belief in God and their religion. There are many other things which sound magical and people pay high prices for it.

One such thing is kamya sindoor. It looks like an ordinary sindoor which Indian house wives apply in their hairs (red color). It is a symbol of their marital status. But kamya sindoor is believed to have magical powers. Though I never experimented myself, but heard that if kamya sindoor is placed on glass it will break the glass.

Another such thing is kali haldi, again known to be of magical powers to keep evils away and to bring luck to you. It has a significant importance in Indian tantrik kriya. Kali haldi is root of a plant which is found in deep wet forests. Yes, it is rare and declared endangered, and government is running projects to save it. People pay high price for it, and when somebody is willing to pay price for the junk weed grown in your paddy field what will you do? You will sell and enjoy the money you made.

Fellow readers from west would understand my logic if I give an example of famous KASHMIR BLUE SAPPHIRE. People pay high price for a gem quality Kashmir sapphire. Though they could get the same quality blue sapphire from Madagascar, Cylone, Combodia or Thai gem mines at a fraction of the cost they pay for a kashmir sapphire. But NO, they will rather pay their dearly earned money for a Kashmir sapphire. They usually end up paying 5 times the price of a usual blue sapphire just because they want a sapphire from a mine which produces less. I sell kashmir sapphire, why should I not sell it when buyers demand it? Will you call it a scam too? ... NO.
It may sound like a scam to people who ever been cheated in the name of one such product and it may sound like a scam to people who have never heard of any such deal on offer or under transactions. But people like me who have seen such objects fetching good price, know that they are priceless in my part of world.

I searched google and hit my head on many other places over internet. I haven't found even a single company making copper iridium alloy. I wonder where it is supplied from? I mean to people who are selling it at rocket price.

I have no intention to make fast money. But yes I would love to have one such metal in my collection if it pulls rice from a distance. Maybe my kids would like to play with it and to tell it to their friends that they own a MAGICAL object which pulls rice.
I would love to hear comments from people who do not call it a scam. Give this story a thought. It's not really a scam, believe me.

Deepak Gupta
- Delhi, India


A. I found your letter very informative, Deepak -- thank you very much for the time you spent on it!

It is true that there is nothing wrong with being interested in collectibles. And if you want a copper-iridium coin, and you can find one, that's fine. It is also true that iridium is an element, different from every other element, and it is possible that copper-iridium has some unusual properties.

But I have called this affair a scam and will continue to do so for 4 reasons: First and foremost, the price that buyers are willing to pay is deliberately falsified constantly to hype the sales. We have received several letters for posting here where the writer claimed to be willing to spend a fortune to buy such a coin. Minutes later we would receive another letter offering to sell such a coin at one-half or one-third of that price, only to discover from the IP address that both letters came from the same computer (same person). The second was an attempt to sell a coin, while the first was obviously a total fiction meant to mislead buyers by falsely implying that they won't lose money because there is a strong resale potential when there actually is none. This was deliberate deception and a scam!

The second reason we call it a scam is that India's universities, museums, and others who study antiquities have given no credence to these "1616 coins". The third reason is that people have submitted photos of these coins and they obviously were cast only weeks ago despite their 1616 markings. The fourth reason is that a whole host of magical properties are claimed but not demonstrated; we tracked down one claim of demonstration and found it to be a total fiction. Thanks again for the insights though.

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Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey


Q. I need properties of Iridium Copper metal and how to make the alloy. Cost of Iridium and percentage of it in alloy.

[name purged at writer's request]
- Hyderabad, India


A. Hi. You say that you want to know how to make this alloy, but you also say you don't know its properties! Why would someone want to make something that they don't even know the properties of? Maybe you can tell us what you are trying to accomplish? Thanks!

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Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey


A. Hello Mr. [name purged at writer's request]!

There is no alloy of iridium and copper that is recognized by any of the standards writing bodies, such as ASTM or DIN or the British Standards Institute, etc. The reason for this is that it would be a very expensive material that serves no niche; I'd use copper-tungsten -- a standard P/M material used for EDM electrodes, for any purpose for which iridium copper would be considered.

Caveat Emptor: from previous postings here I suspect you're being set up for a scam.

Good luck!

Lee Gearhart
East Aurora, New York


A. Copper may boil away like water before iridium mixes into this alloy.

M berard
- Stoughton, Massachusetts

March 24, 2008

Q. How to process this material, and what are all the reactions they show in. And what are all the qualities it must have for original?

nagesh karthi
- Chennai, India

March 25, 2008

A. If you have read the thread and still insist on asking, I don't know what we can do for you, Nagesh; you seem dead set on being swindled :-)

Sorry, and good luck to your family.

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Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey

Frauds, Scams, and Cons

July 10, 2012

Q. Okay, iridium is very unreactive; it's only attacked by molten salts like NaCl NaCN (sodium cyanide). The common isotope we found is 193IR ... my question is that if copper(2)chloride is kinetic energy reaction with iridium, using osmium as the catalyst, can we make the iridium copper alloy? Please answer my question.

- india

February 7, 2014

Q. First I want to ask that what is the price of 3.5 kg copper iridium material, and is it right that we can produce a electricity by copper iridium material, And if answer is yes than how much electricity we can produce by copper iridium material? And is it right that copper iridium material can make radiation causes? Please give me more information about copper iridium material.

talaviya rocky
- surat , gujarat , india

April 29, 2014

Q. Hi All
I am not here to fix any deal or things of that sort.
I would like to tell you I have in possession a copper iridium stone. It is exhibiting all functions like rice pulling, diffusing torch bulb, etc. I tried very hard to find a genuine buyer but to no avail.
I wrote to NASA, University of California and many other premier research universities about this product. Now I do not want to sell off my product; instead I want to hand over it to any responsible organisation so that it's exact scientific uses would be revealed. I got no response from any university either.
All i can say from my experience is that this product really exists. All those functions which are mentioned in various RP forums are true but I think it does not have any scientific use.
I must say despite having this product in my possession, I am not able to find neither a buyer nor its scientific uses.

adil bhat
- srinagar, india

April 2014

A. Hi Adil. And why do you suppose that neither NASA, nor the University of California, nor any other university cares about this alloy?


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Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey

June 16, 2014

Q. Sir,

While teaching the Physics and Chemistry subjects, I came across some parents who came and asked me about Rice pulling property of copper iridium and talked about the exorbitant price at which it is fetched in the international market, that I got attracted to the business. In past 5 months i spent about 12 lakh INR but did not get anything out of it. I also found that many people are mad after the business and have lost crores of rupees. Everybody including me is having 3 to 4 materials with us but no genuine buyer company to buy the material further. I personally made attempts to find out from many scientists whether such a business exist? Whether properties of Cu-Ir exists, how can they be confirmed? And the desperate attempts to find the buyer companies have failed. Please guide me so that I can take decision to go ahead or not.

Dinakar Prakash
Educational Guidance Institute - Pune, India

June 2014

A. Hi Dinakar. You're the teacher, teaching these students Physics and Chemistry, so that they'll learn the scientific method rather than continuing the superstitions of their parents. If you want to investigate the matter, do it with science rather than with mass hysteria.

But as a business matter, rather than a scientific matter, there are no buyers. The offers to buy are fictitious and they are placed by those who are trying to sell (in order to sway people to believe that if they buy they will be able to resell; they won't). There is no market, it is all fiction presented by sellers.


pic of Ted Mooney Teds signature
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey

Lightning rods stolen to extract static electricity

June 30, 2014

Q. For nearly 5 months, in our locality it seems there is a big demand for the earthern Copper plates which are connected with the lightning conductors, especially which are installed during late 1800 and early 1900. Due to the demand, most of the places which are lightning prone are at a risk, since the said copper plates have been installed to absorb the lightning static electricity to safeguard the destruction and damages to life and property. According to middle men, there is a foreigner who has his lab technician searching for accumulated static energy from the said copper plates of the lightning Conductors, and compensates with a huge amount of money. And according to them it seems that until now they have extracted the said energy only from very few copper plates. But it seems more than 100 to 150 copper plates have been removed disconnecting the lightning conductor systems. It has created a risk to the places where it was properly installed. Let me know is it possible to extract static electricity from a copper plate connected with a lightning conductor ? Secondly please explain, is it for the extraction of iridium from copper plate or simply a scam?

Regi manawa
- thabuththegama, sri lanka

June 2014

A. The copper conductors and plates were probably stolen because copper has a high scrap value. But believe whatever superstitions about indium and lightning and static electricity you wish, Regi. One thing indium has been proven to do is relieve boredom and tedium :-)


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Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey

July 2, 2014


Have you named an element after yourself? Tedium, very light when everything else seems to be getting heavy? Wonder if Tedium can pull rice from 2" away...

Brian Terry
Aerospace - Yeovil, Somerset, UK

July 23, 2014

Whoa! Someone contacted me to sell a Cu-Ir bell weighing 22 kgs for just over USD 4.5 billion. I am indeed grateful they thought me worthy of pulling of such a big deal. I might look into it after I am through selling a kg of anti-matter that is lying in my house and the spacecraft powered by bad news that travels faster than light (apologies to Douglas Adams) that I bought on ebay. I am also interested in buying a time machine, light sabres that might be lying in your backyard or basement...

Anurag Dixit
- Mumbai, MH, India

July 23, 2014

Over the years, a bunch of the bronze memorial plaques at the Van Cortlandt park Memorial Grove (they planted trees for a bunch of Bronx vets who died in WWII) were ripped off by some crackheads. What hairbags. I guess they can't help themselves.

I think they're in the process of restoring them. That's great. There's this one guy (a corporal Singer) who died about a month before VJ day. His Mom was probably already planning his welcome home dinner. Enough to make one weep.

On a decidedly lighter note, I heard a story about how the cops busted some meth head trying to break open a transformer cause he got "PCB" confused with "P2P."

dave wichern Dave Wichern
- The Bronx, New York

August 7, 2014

Q. Just looking for some information regarding this matter, there have been reports on a series of robberies where lightning rods are stolen from buildings which are around 100- 200 years old. there are many speculations such as when lightning strikes these rods, through time it can change the copper to gold, there is also a belief that the copper turns into Iridium. I'm not sure what to believe. However, I wonder how much is iridium actually valued at? The rumors have it that 1 gram of Iridium is worth a 1000 USD. Is this just to dupe people is there some truth to this valuation?

Joshua Surendraraj
- Colombo, Sri Lanka

August 2014

A. Cousin Joshua: There is a world of information about iridium out there. There is a lot of information about it just on this one page, including the valuation you asked for, its actual applications, etc.

When we seem blind to real information staring us in the face, ignoring and dismissing it, it may indicate an unwillingness to accept it. Mark Twain famously said "It is easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled".

As Dave has implied, people across the world steal materials with copper in them because of its scrap value. They steal grave markers to melt them, not because they think the markers contain magic spirits. And they steal the copper waste pipes from abandoned homes in flood damaged areas ... not because tinkling down a pipe for a hundred years turns it to gold, but because the pipe remains copper :-)

Luck and Regards,

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Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey

January 20, 2015

Q. Hello sir, I have a very unusual question: A few month ago in my village a banana tree was struck by lightning. Since then a part of the tree has been glowing like an energy bulb.
We had a scientist friend of my family have a look at it. He advised to keep the tree in a wet place. At the same time he said it is worth millions. Is that true?

shibly zaman
- dhaka bangladesh

January 2015

Hi Shibly. You can't argue with science.


pic of Ted Mooney Teds signature
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey

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