Fischesserite‐Inspired Recyclable Se‐Polyurethanes for Selective Gold Extraction

Yiheng Dai, Ke Zheng, Yizheng Tan, Wentian Xiang, Banruo Xianyu, Huaping Xu

Adv. Sustainable Syst.; 2020, DOI: 10.1002/adsu.202000072.

Faced with ever-severe gold mineral depletion, it is meaningful to obtain a sustainable gold resource by utilization of accumulating waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE). Inspired by fischesserite, the first naturally occurring selenide of gold, a novel selenium-containing polyurethane (Se-polyurethane) is prepared. This material is able to extract aqueous gold in its elemental form with a selectivity 437 times over Cu and 443 times over Ni and a capacity of 802 mg gold/g. The extracted gold can be collected through a non-calcination post-treatment procedure and the Se-polyurethane can be recycled via a convenient regeneration procedure. Derived from this material, a high-throughput circulating aqueous gold mining system and a cross-linked Se-sponge are illustrated to mimic dynamic and static extraction processes respectively for possible industrialization. Altogether, this selenium-containing materials have the potential to be a probable tool in gold extraction against resource depletion in the future.

Dai YH-Advanced Sustainable Systems