Sodium thiocyanate (NaSCN) is indeed known as an efficient gold dissolving agent. It is commonly used in various industrial and laboratory applications for this purpose. Sodium thiocyanate forms a complex with gold ions, allowing for the dissolution of gold.
When sodium thiocyanate is dissolved in water, it dissociates into sodium (Na+) and thiocyanate (SCN-) ions. The thiocyanate ions have a strong affinity for gold ions (Au+), forming a stable complex called tetrathiocyanatogoldate(I) (Au(SCN)4-). This complex is water-soluble, which allows for the efficient dissolution of gold.
Here’s a generalized equation representing the dissolution reaction:
Au + 4SCN- → Au(SCN)4-
It’s important to note that the dissolution of gold using sodium thiocyanate requires specific conditions such as appropriate temperature, pH, and the presence of other chemicals or catalysts that facilitate the reaction. These conditions may vary depending on the specific application or desired outcome.