Gold and Precious Metals

Sponge made from a cheesy waste product can help recover the gold from your dumped circuit boards

It’s not every day somebody looks at a lump of cheese and thinks it could help solve part of the mounting problem that is e-waste. But that’s pretty much what researchers in Switzerland have done by creating a sponge-like material from whey proteins, a material that can suck up the milligrams of gold used in millions of electronic devices.

News of the work was reported by ETH Zurich (via Sweclockers), the institute that carried out the research in question. If you take a look inside any gaming PC, especially a fully kitted out desktop, you’ll see lots of large electronic circuit boards and many of the interconnects within it contain gold and other valuable metals. 

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