How has recycling changed the whole landscape of platinum metals?

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The question arises quite often as to what may be the reason that there is no hike in the prices of platinum group of metals (PGMs) even though the supply is reduced considerably. The main reason for this is that the recycling in this industry is well developed. Therefore there is an additional supply of platinum metals. The process of recycling of platinum metals is in fact, extensive.

Why are the prices low?

The cost of PGM recycling is lower than the cost of mining and so this has an effect on the prices. The platinum group of metals is a sector where the law of demand and supply seems to operate but as variable rule. You can well understand this if you look or consider the output of recycling of the platinum metals or even if you try to quantify it.

  • It is seen that during the last few years there has been a deficit in the supply of the platinum metals. It is even expected that this will continue in the coming years.
  •  The platinum metals are considered to be the most important part of technology metals especially for environmental management. It is of great importance in the exhaust emissions from the internal combustion engines.
  • The use of the PGM recycling is important more in the production of fossil fuels mainly because they act as chemical catalysts. The use of platinum is rare in jewellery as it is difficult to fabricate as compared to gold and silver.

The demand for PGM was created many years back especially when the exhausted emission catalytic converters became mandatory in the automotive sector. Initially the catalysts used to make of steel cylinders that were packed with coated alumina beads.

PGM is the most recycled materials and is expected to only increase in the near future. The platinum metals are resistant to acid attacks and so are considered to be native materials.