• It has to do with each element's chemical properties and of course the concept that each of those has different density values. "The density of a substance is defined as its mass divided by its volume. Since density is the result of the mass of a substance and how much space it occupies, it is a fundamental or characteristic property of a substance. "As mass increases, (and volume stays constant) density increases". Source: Gold: Iron:
  • Density is the ratio of the mass of something divided by its volume. With pure elements, especially metals, the atoms are usually packed together as tightly as they can get. So, the volume is largely determined by the size of the atoms. However, there are a number of factors that go into determining the size of an atom. So, I will simply state here that gold atoms are actually smaller than iron atoms (135  pm vs. 140 pm respectively). Another thing to keep in mind is that each element has a different number of particles that make up each of the atoms. The mass of the atom is determined by the number of particles it contains. As a general rule, as we move down the Periodic Table of the Elements (, atoms get heavier. Iron (Fe) is much high in the Periodic Table than gold (Au) is. So, gold a gold atom is much heavier than an iron atom (196.967 vs. 55.845 atomic mass units respectively.) So, gold packs a lot more mass into a smaller volume than iron does. Therefore, gold has a much higher density.
  • Gold has almost 4 times the atomic weight of iron. Check the table of elements.
  • Density is Mass divided by its volume, right? Gold has a higher atomic weight than iron, so it will be much heavier.

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