Chemistry/Composition of Canadian Coins

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COMPOSITION OF CANADIAN COINS

The following information, available from the Canadian Mint, is invaluable for teachers wishing to make up a lab involving the analysis of currency. Thank you to Gordon Gore for referring me to this web site.
Reference: http://www.mint.ca/en/collectors_corner/circulation

Value Years Mass (g) Composition
1908-20

1920-41
1942-77
1978-79
1980-81
1982-96
1997-99
2000-

5.67

3.24
3.24
3.24
2.8
2.5
2.25
2.35

95.5% Cu, 3.0% Sn, 1.5% Zn

95.5% Cu, 3.0% Sn, 1.5% Zn
98.0% Cu, 0.5% Sn, 1.5% Zn
98.0% Cu, 1.75% Sn, 0.25% Zn
98.0% Cu, 1.75% Sn, 0.25% Zn
98.0% Cu, 1.75% Sn, 0.25% Zn
98.4% Zn, 1.6% Cu plating
94.0% steel, 4.5% Cu, 1.5% Ni, (*) (NOTE: Magnetic!)

(*) Note that some pennies in 2000-01 had copper-plated steel compositions, as evidenced by a small “P” under the Queen.
1908-19

1920-21
1922-42
1942-43
1944-45
1946-51
1951-54
1955-81
1982-99
2000-

1.167

1.167
4.54
4.54
4.54
4.54
4.54
4.54
4.6
3.95

7.5% Cu, 92.5% Ag

20% Cu, 80% Ag
99% Ni
88% Cu, 12% Zn
chrome plated steel
99.9% Ni
chrome plated steel
99.9% Ni
75% Cu, 25% Ni
94.5% steel, 3.5% Cu, 2% Ni plating

10¢ 1908-10

1910-11
1920-67
1968-77
1978-99
2000-

2.32

2.33
2.33
2.07
2.07
1.75

7.5% Cu, 92.5% Ag

7.5% Cu, 92.5% Ag
80.0% Ag; 20.0% Cu
99.9% Ni
99% Ni
92% steel, 5.5% Cu, 2.5% Ni plating

25¢ 1908-10

1910-19
1920-67
1967-68
1968-99
2000-

5.81

5.93
5.83
5.05
5.05
4.4

7.5% Cu, 92.5% Ag

7.5% Cu, 92.5% Ag
80.0% Ag; 7.5% Cu
50.0% Ag; 50.0% Cu
99.9% Ni
94% steel, 3.8% Cu, 2.2% Ni plating

$1 1987- 7 91.5% Ni electroplated with 8.5% bronze plating
$2 1996- 7.3 outer ring = 99% Ni

Inner core = 92% Cu, 2% Ni, 6% Al

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