Skip to main content

View Diary: Nearly triple efficiency and lower cost: thin-film solar cell breakthrough (281 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  Inventory. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mrkvica

    Inventories of Gold have been accumulated for centuries and is sitting in vaults where for practical purposes, it is essentially useless.

    Humans could stop mining gold today and use the existing inventory for centuries in functional applications.

    Ironically, when it is used in functional applications a pretty high percentage is recycled at product end of life because of the value, and as I suggested before, the artificially high cost is something of a blessing in disguise in the sense it has prompted innovation to minimize use and find replacement materials, thereby conserving it as a resource.

    For example, gold wires have been used in IC packaging for decades (because it's ductility enables very fine wires and it has good bonding characteristics) and although the size of wires has steadily declined (15-20um now) the recent increase in cost has driven another round of R+D for replacement and now  copper wires with sputtered gold coating are beginning to replace solid gold wires in some applications, trading-off a slight decline in bonding speed/productivity for significantly lower cost and better conductivity/lower inductance. This results in a significant reduction in gold consumption, but against the consumption of gold for jewelry or ingots for investment, it's a small drop in the bucket.

    What about my Daughter's future?

    by koNko on Fri Dec 07, 2012 at 10:21:56 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site