In a previous blog post, we outlined the regulations for making the Olympic medals – including the precious metal contents for gold, silver, and bronze medals. But, the regulations are not very strict. This allows the hosting country to create medals that have a unique, nationalistic spirit to their design.
Usually, the host country will use certain artwork to make the medals their own. But sometimes, they can alter the actual composition. For example, Norway designed Olympic medals that contained sparagmite – a type of stone native to Scandinavia. More recently, China awarded Olympic medals containing jade in Beijing. In the upcoming 2014 Olympics, Russia will design their medals in a similar fashion – but with some minerals that are really “out-of-this-world.”
In 2013, a meteor made impact in Chelyabinsk, scattering fragments all over the country. It was a historical event and the source of much international intrigue and scientific fanfare. To honor the Olympic champions, Russia will award medals that are embedded with meteorite fragments from the impact. It’s truly a design unlike previous medals, and yet another reason for aspiring athletes to shoot for the stars.