Medals for Olympic Games 2014 in Sochi are being made at the jewelry factory “Adamas” in Moscow. In general they plan to make 1300 gold, silver and bronze medals.
Not less than three kilograms of pure gold, two tons of silver and 700 kilograms of bronze will be spent to make all the medals.
Gold Olympic medals are made from pure silver and coated with gold then (not less than six grams of pure gold).
All precious metals used for the needs of Olympic games are mined on the territory of Russia and the madals are made by Russian specialists only.
The madals are made in a special shop. The technological process consists of twenty five stages. Most of them are related to a metal workpiece processing. Others – to processing of polycarbonate which is used to make an insert in the form of a patchwork quilt – one of the symbols of Sochi-2014.
First they make metal squares from silver or bronze (12×12 cm, 12 mm thick). Then they cut out round workpieces from the squares (diameter – 10 cm).
Cutting patterns – the symbols of Olympics, and a hole for a ribbon.
Then they insert polycarbonate crystals into the medals which are subsequently grinded and washed.
One of the basic stages of all the production process is the insertion of polycarbonate elements which are butt-jointed to form a patchwork quilt. They are butt-jointed thanks to the special precision of their making. Sizes are measured in hundredths or thousandths of a micron. Polycarbonate is frozen and inserted into a medal. Then the medal is heated and the temperature difference makes the elements enlarge and joint more tightly. That is why the insertion is made from polycarbonate instead of glass. It is more reliable and does not require use of glue.
It takes eighteen hours to make a medal of any value. Medals for Paralympic games are made for twenty hours (some processes are a bit different in this case such as application of Braille letters for partially sighted or blind sportsmen).
The makers of the medals promise they will withstand everything – joyful bites of winners, bathing in champagne, accidental falling from a height and even throws against the walls (if sportsmen get medals of a different value from the one they expected).