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Golden nanowires 'could boost' industrial demand

A new use for gold in advanced microelectronics production is being pioneered by researchers from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).

The NIST team claims to have successfully tested a technique using gold that could pave the way for large-scale manufacture of nanowires for atomic-scale electronic products.

Gold bullion is principally sold on markets as a commodity with perceived monetary value, but other industries buy gold for practical processes - for example the metal is used in dentistry tools.

Demand for gold could now be boosted by the new process, which facilitates the growing of nanowires for transistors by employing small quantities of gold.

Hopes are high for the research project, with 600 nanowire-based transistors already created through the process.

The development could couple with other recent developments to significantly bolster industrial gold demand, with Swiss scientists recently pioneering the use of ink containing gold for the printing of electronic equipment.

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