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Diethyl Malonate or DEM (Diethyl propanedioate, CAS Number 105-53-3) is a solvent useful in gold extraction. It is a flammable ester that smells of green apples. It is relatively insoluble in water and gold loaded into the solvent is stripped by refluxing with a saturated solution of oxalic acid.
A chief advantage of diethyl malonate gold extraction systems is that its density (1.05 g/cc or more, if loaded with Au(III)) ensures that no phase inversion occurs.
Diethyl Malonate is on the DEA list of watched precursor chemicals and can be problematic to get in larger quantities.
- GRF : Comparison between different solvents for extraction
- Wikipedia : Diethyl malonate