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Gold is one of the most precious metals. It is used for decorative or industrial applications, such as jewellery and industrial electronic coatings (see Figure 12). The low-temperature eutectic of gold with silicon in the latter application allows for hard and durable layers with a thickness in the range of 0.05-10 mm.
Gold(III) cyanide is toxic and can be used only in well-ventilated and controlled conditions. To reduce the risk of exposure, it is typically loaded onto activated carbon in a column leaching process, often referred to as carbon-in-column (CIC). The carbon is fed into the leaching solution without the ore particles, and solution flow through the columns is usually counter-current to facilitate higher loading efficiency.
An older route for producing potassium gold cyanide K(Au(CN)2) consisted of dissolving metallic gold in aqua regia, followed by replacing unwanted chloride ions with cyanide and removing excess nitric acid. However, this procedure could not guarantee high product purity.
A new, safer and more efficient process for preparing gold(III) cyanide has been developed: phosphine-ligated dicyanoarylgold(III) complexes. These compounds are characterized by high stability and excellent emission quantum yields. Furthermore, their reactivity towards reductive elimination has been explored in detail.
The gold adsorption capacity of the novel produced material was determined using a NETZCH STA 449C thermo gravimetric balance. The depleted adsorbent was subjected to a thermal analysis in air, which allowed for the determination of the temperature at which it decomposes into metallic gold. The results indicate that the new adsorbent material can be efficiently used for gold recovery from residual diluted solutions.