How to extract gold from motherboards
Everybody wants motherboards these days. Why do lots of e-waste recyclers need motherboards? It is because there is gold in motherboards. And the recyclers make a lot of money from them. When we talk of how to recover gold from motherboards, we must first know as to what are the components on motherboards from which we may recover gold and other precious metals? On a motherboard, we have gold plated sockets, pins (connectors) and we have chips. From one kilogram of PQFP motherboard chips, we get around 2 to 2.2 grams of gold. And from BGA chips, we get even more. While from PLCC chips we get around 1 to 1.25 grams of gold. From these chips, we get a little bit of palladium and silver also.
We can extract gold from pins and sockets through cyanide recovery process. Motherboards can be placed in a plastic tub filled with a hot cyanide solution. Make sure that cyanide solution should be stirred continuously and oxygen should be passed into it through some air pump regularly. After the complete removal of gold from the gold plated motherboard parts, the solution is separated from the boards and is filtered through filter paper. The fine quality of zinc powder is used to precipitate gold from the cyanide solution. The solution is shaken well with a plastic rod at short intervals to ensure the complete precipitation of gold from the solution. Then the solution is allowed to stand for few hours so that all gold particles settle to the bottom. Till now, you have learned 50 percent about how to extract gold from motherboards?
As for recovering gold from motherboard chips, these chips are burned and ground to a fine powder. Different methods can be employed to extract gold from motherboard chips such as aqua regia recovery process, pyrolysis, and cupellation process. More details of which can be had from us by sending us mails.
Apart from chips, we have ceramic capacitors on computer motherboards from which we get Pd which is also an expensive metal. Palladium too can be recovered either chemically or through cupellation process.
Extracting gold, as well as base metals from motherboards, is a very profitable business. People mostly talk of extracting precious metals from motherboards, and ignore the fact that other metals such as copper, aluminum, tin, lead and brass(an alloy) etc. are also extracted from them. I am not deviating from the gold recovery from motherboards here, but I want to inform my readers that we do recover gold from motherboards, and make money, but if we also take into account the other metals that can be reclaimed from motherboards, we will make even more profit. The motherboard has multi layers of copper and thus yields lot of copper. One kilogram of motherboard PCB (after removing components from it) has more than 200 grams of copper. So, if you recover all the metals from motherboards, it is no less than recovering gold from it. When did someone ask me how to extract gold from motherboards? My reply is, "your question should be how to extract all the metals from motherboards, why only gold?"