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Q & A: magnetic gold alloys?

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Most recent answer: 06/10/2011
Q:
14 Karat gold being .585% pure gold, and .415 alloys, (typically nickle, zinc, & or copper) is that enough impurities for it to be magnetic?? Also, Can any voltage of DC, or AC electrical current attract microscopic gold particles to a charged metal rod??
- Steven Wade (age 47)
Palm Springs, Ca. USA
A:
41% impurity may be enough to give ferromagnetism if all the impurities are magnetic atoms (iron, nickel, cobalt). That's particularly true if the alloy is really a mixture of two components, one rich in, say, cobalt and the other rich in gold. That happens with cobalt, leaving one magnetic component. I'm not sure whether it happens with nickel or iron.

Mike W.

(published on 06/10/2011)

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