Russia remains the largest free market supplier in the world of precious metal bearing scrap. The UK fortunately remains a country rich in refineries. Originating from the dismantling of military equipment or the residues generated in Nickel production the scrap comes in a very wide variety of forms.
Lipmann Walton is pleased to quote terms for the recovery of platinum group bearing materials, whether in the form of dusts, residues, catalyst or alloy. We are happy to act as principal or agent in this type of business.
The exact date of discovery of this metal is unknown. It was known in the middle ages by pre-Columbian South Americans and it was brought to Europe in about 1750.
It is the most abundant of the platinum group metals occurring naturally and in traces in heavy metal sulphide ores.
Pt compounds are readily reduced to the metal which has a ccp structure. It is a lustrous silvery white malleable and ductile metal. It is unaffected by air and water and will only dissolve in aqua regia (HCl/HNO3) and molten alkali.
The metal is used extensively in jewellery, laboratory ware, thermocouples, electrical contacts and catalysis. In catalysis the metal is generally impregnated on an inert support. Pt compounds have anti-tumour activity and are used in cancer drugs. However, due to its high cost, Platinum’s use is not as widespread as one might expect considering its inertness and other novel properties.
The earth seems to have got an unlucky straw in its share of crustal platinum, however. Elsewhere in the universe it is suspected that Platinum concentrations are much higher, to the extent that it is even economically viable to mine Platinum at asteroid impact sites.
Relative atomic mass
71.6 W /m/K