MadSci Network: Other

Re: How are pennies made

Date: Tue Dec 7 12:55:17 2004
Posted By: Steve Mack, Post-doc/Fellow, Molecular and Cell Biology
Area of science: Other
ID: 1102445669.Ot

Hi Shalonda,

We forwarded your question to the Virtual Reference Desk, because it wasn't really within the scope of our site. Unfortunately, they have not been able to contact you with their answer, so I am posting it here, in the hope that you will find it.

Well, since I know that pennies are made in a mint, I went to the Librarians Index to the Internet and searched for "mint."

It gave me a link to the United States Mint

I then went to the Frequently Ask Questions (FAQ ) portion of the United States Mint page and looked up "pennies."

First lots and lots of discs are stamped out of big sheets of metal (a mixture of copper and zinc ) by a machine, like lots and lots of round cookie cutters cutting cookies out cookie dough. The left over metal is recycled.

The metal discs are then heated, washed, and dried to make them softer and clean.

Since they're now softer it's then possible to add that raised rim around the outside edge.

After that, they get stampped with the picture and writing that turns them into a penny.

If you want to know more about how pennies are made, you should be able to find out in your local library.

Philip B. -- Virtual Reference Desk

How's that for the spirit of internet cooperation?

Keep asking questions!

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