Gold is highly conductive, meaning electricity can easily flow through it with minimal resistance. Copper, silver and aluminum are also conductive, but gold offers a superior level of electrical conductivity. As a result, it's the perfect material for electrical components like those previously mentioned.
Let us discuss why gold can conduct electricity. The gold can conduct electricity due to the free valence electrons that dislocate from the shell and move around the atom to conduct electricity. These electrons get excited/ mobile when supplied with energy sufficient to jump out of the valence shell.
Gold is not used for making electric wires because it is too rare, and too costlier than Copper. Silver and copper are used for making wires.
In fact, gold mining consumes 131.9 TWh of energy yearly.
The metals that can be found in the free state in nature are gold, silver, platinum. As they are found at the bottom of the activity series and hence are the least reactive metals. Therefore they are found in a free state in nature.
Occurrence. On Earth, gold is found in ores in rock formed from the Precambrian time onward. It most often occurs as a native metal, typically in a metal solid solution with silver (i.e. as a gold/silver alloy). Such alloys usually have a silver content of 8–10%.
Strip out the boards
In another container, mix two parts hydrochloric acid and one part weak hydrogen peroxide (a concentration of three per cent). Pour this mixture over the circuit boards so they are completely submerged. Wait for a week, giving the vessel a stir every day with a glass or plastic rod.
Among all home devices, computers and televisions typically contain the most gold. Gold is also found in the circuit boards of earlier generations of cameras, radios, and media players.
Circuits in modern CPUs and Laptops weigh around 100 gm so you can expect to extract 0.150 grams of Gold. Additionally, the wires and connector pins have gold which will amount to another 0.070 gram and another 0.090 grams for gold plated contacts.
Copper and other metal wires are often lightly coated with gold on connection points for several reasons. The most common is extremely thin wires, which can sometimes lower the conductivity and capacity. Gold is exceptionally solderable and doesn't produce any surface oxides.
Arguably the most important industrial use of gold is in the manufacture of electronics. Gold is a highly efficient conductor which can carry tiny currents and remain corrosion-free. It is used in connectors, switch and relay contacts, soldered joints, connecting wires and connection strips.
Pure gold on its own cannot stick to a magnet. However, if you have an alloy of gold, then it could stick to a magnet. An example of a gold alloy that may stick to a magnet is gold with over 20% of its atoms replaced by iron. In very cold temperatures this alloy of gold may magnetize all on its own.
Gold is the most non-reactive of all metals and does not rust. Gold is so pliable that it can be made into sewing thread. Gold can conduct heat and electricity. Apart from copper and caesium, Gold is the only non-white coloured metal.
Gold is one of the least reactive elements on the Periodic Table. It doesn't react with oxygen, so it never rusts or corrodes.
This is because the gold content in rams is about 0.155%, which means that there is 15.5 milligrams of gold in every gram of rams. So, if you have 1 kilogram of rams, which is equal to 1000 grams, you will have 15.5 grams of gold.
You can also find gold in televisions, gaming consoles, printers, or essentially anything electronic. It's possible to recover this gold, but it takes a fair amount of know-how since the process typically involves burning the electronics to a crisp and using cyanide or acid to separate the gold.
You can find Au plating on the outside of devices, such as on electrical connectors. Most of the gold in electronics, however, is located inside the devices in the circuit boards. Electronics companies use gold plating to enhance the conductivity of the circuit board and protect it from corrosion.
We believe it conservative to say with today's gold price, over $10 of gold gets layered in an average computer. In other words, 1/5th of a gram of gold can get pulled or withdrawn from an average computer's interior.
Removing Gold Using Fire
Use steel tongs to turn over the burning circuit boards. Get a metal bin or tray, and put the circuit boards into it. Break the boards into smaller pieces so they burn faster. Light the boards on fire.
Gold is usually found embedded in quartz veins, or placer stream gravel. It is mined in South Africa, the USA (Nevada, Alaska), Russia, Australia and Canada.
All of the gold that's deposited in our planet was formed during the explosions of stars and collisions of asteroids, and eventually found its way to earth over time.
Australia and Russia hold the largest reserves of gold
Australia and Russia hold a large share of the world's gold mine reserves, accounting for 8,400 metric tons and 6,800 metric tons, respectively. Worldwide, the production of gold reached an estimated 3,100 metric tons in 2022.