From Cell-Phones


The average mobile phone contains about
24mg of gold,
250mg of silver,
9,000mg of copper,
3,800mg of cobalt,
9mg of palladium
The fact is that there is respectable amount of gold in every cell phone and you get more gold out of a mobile handset scrap than any other computer waste scrap. Every cell phone has around Rs 200 or $5-10 worth of gold. The motherboards of mobile phones are gold plated, and so are all the connectors used on them. The various chips on the motherboard also are gold and platinum plated.

Note: Information and process recovery details are mentioned by doing research on related field to the best of our knowledge.

So, request to all is to be cautious during the recovery since you are dealing with all type of basic as well as hazardous chemicals. So you will be held responsible if the method goes wrong. So take care when you proceed.

Before you start

The procedure to be deployed to recover gold from mobile phone waste is called cyanide recovery. The procedure is very economical and guarantees complete extraction of gold. The most important point to be noted here is that cyanide is a very harmful chemical and thus should be handled with utmost care.


Here we start with the process.

1. To begin with take plain water in a steel pot and boil it.

2. Now take out the amount of water in which the cell phone can be easily immersed. This would vary depending on the size of different handsets.

3. Now you need to see the amount of cyanide to be added to in water. This would once again be dependent on the quantity of water and the size or weight of cell phone dump. For example, if you have 10Kg of motherboards dump immersed in 15liters of water, then you can add 50grams of cyanide, and more can be added later if needed. Use commercial sodium cyanide and not potassium cyanide. With the help of a wooden stick you can try to dissolve the cyanide in the water.

4. Strong oxygen presence should be maintained in the cyanide solution. For achieving this, different kinds of pumps are available in the market. The more oxygen is present in the solution, the better the gold would dissolve in cyanide.

5. Once you notice that all the gold has been removed from the motherboard then you can take the motherboard out and filter the solution with a filter paper.

6. You can very easily separate gold from the cyanide solution by addition of zinc dust to it.

But, the problem is even after you learn how to extract gold from cell phones, the process isn’t too inexpensive, and you can hardly make any profit unless it’s done on a large scale.