Mercury in Gold Mining

Mercury would be shiny and it looks like a silvery liquid metal and it is sometimes called as the
quicksilver. It is the only metal that is liquid at the standard temperature and pressure.

Mercury is an element so there is no chance for the mercury to break down in any environments.

It would be cycled up between the atmosphere, water and land which have the power to travel to the larger
distance to the original sources.

But, the liquid mercury is a rare element that had been found in the earth.

It had been fixed up with the gold amalgam that would be heated up and it would be vaporized to obtain gold.

What is liquid mercury and why it is used for?

The mercury would be typically found in the form of its own common ore cinnabar and mercury
sulfite. For extracting the pure mercury they had been grounded up and heated to the temperature
of about 1076 degrees F with oxygen.

During this process the vapor present in it would get escaped from the ores and sulfur dioxides had been removed.

Then that metal is condensed and washed up with nitric acid and it had been purified and distilled up.
Mercury can form the alloys with the metals as like gold and this process is called as the
amalgams.

Through this amalgam the mercury has the power to extract the gold from the rocks.
You may think what would happen when both gets contacted towards each other?

In this stage the gold would dissolve into mercury and after that the mercury and gold had been separated.

 

Dangers of Liquid Mercury


In most of the place considering the dangers of liquid mercury they had restricted to make use
of it because it act as a profound and long term poison for the humans and other organisms.
It is considered as the dangerous and it would lead to the significant mercury exposure and cause
a lot of healthy risks. You may think how when you make for gold mining liquid mercury in
room it would get vaporize and filled in air with the tiny invisible mercury atoms, when you
inhale it then it would directly go and affect the lungs and from there into the blood and brain.
Even it would affect your health when it gets contacted into the skin and when a person swallows
it.

Uses of liquid mercury
The mercury had been used worldwide especially in west africa for extracting the gold and here is the list of uses of
liquid mercury as follows
 The alluvial, eluvial or colluvial placer deposit the mercury and that is used for extraction
of the secondary gold through using the gravity method.
 The mercury element had been used up with the fluorescent lamps, thermometer and in
other medicine for the production of the chemicals and for making the liquid mirror.
 The gold would get dissolved in mercury as similar to the salt that get dissolves in the
water.