Reverse Electroplating for Gold Recovery

Gold is typically thought of as a metal used for coins and jewelry. However, its resistance to corrosion, conductivity and malleability makes it useful for electronics. When electronics become defective, there are ways to recover the gold, such as reverse electroplating.

Gold coins.
Gold coins. (Image: Digital Vision./Photodisc/Getty Images)

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Reverse Electroplating

Reverse electroplating involves the use of a chemical solution and electricity to strip a metal (in this case, gold) from an item. Reverse electroplating is also useful for recovering other metals.

Cleaning and stripping gold.
Cleaning and stripping gold. (Image: KatarzynaBialasiewicz/iStock/Getty Images)

Electronics Containing Gold

Not all electronics contain gold. Central processing units (CPUs), pins, and different kinds of circuit boards are all items that may contain gold, with circuit boards being particularly desirable for this type of recycling.

Circuit board.
Circuit board. (Image: Hemera Technologies/ Images)

Hazards of Reverse Electroplating

Reverse electroplating is generally simple and effective for gold recovery. However, strong chemicals are involved in the process, which makes it somewhat dangerous.

Hazardous chemicals.
Hazardous chemicals. (Image: Digital Vision./Photodisc/Getty Images)


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