Security

The precise quantity of gold is verified through rigorous testing by Valaurum and independent laboratories.

 

VerificationAuthenticationRecovery

Verification

Every Aurum® issue is painstakingly verified using proprietary and industry-standard techniques.

Aurum are manufactured with a proprietary, vacuum deposition process that allows unprecedentedly small and precise quantities of gold to be accumulated. During this process, gold is bombarded with atoms of argon, causing gold to fly across empty space and strike the printed, polyester film. Then a second sheet of polyester is laminated on top of the accumulated layer of gold, sealing and protecting it.

The gold content of each issue is rigorously verified by the manufacturer, Valaurum, and independent laboratories.

First, Aurum throughout each production run are checked with a fire assay. During this assay, the polyester film is burned away, leaving the non-reactive gold behind. The resulting pellet is weighed using sensitive scales, confirming the precise quantity of gold in every Aurum. These assay results are checked regularly against independent scientific laboratories. The manufacturing records, optical readings, and fire assay results of every run are kept for five years, long after the run has been independently verified. Before Valaurum accepts any issue, it performs its own, independent tests, assaying random samples throughout the run. Valaurum also confirms its tests by sending production Aurum to reputable independent testing laboratories to confirm the quantity of gold in each issue. Our preferred assayers are Ledoux & Company, registered weighmasters for any materials that go into the Comex Exchange, and Alex Stewart International.

Together, these processes guarantee the precise quantity of gold in every Aurum.

Authentication

The thin film gold of an Aurum best displays the beauty and special elemental properties of 24k gold. The individual atoms of an Aurum are spread thinly and accurately to expose as much gold to the surface as possible. Gold coins and bars hide most of the metal under the surface, allowing debasement with tungsten, lead or other materials. Foil and wire can be made in small quantities, but their thickness and purity is highly variable, making them difficult to authenticate.

By contrast, the Aurum’s proprietary security features allow easy verification. These methods include:

Color and Transmission Spectrum We have all seen the luster and rich color of gold. In fact, gold is only ‘gold’ colored when you look at its surface. When gold is thin enough that light can pass through it, it has a unique blue-green color. Most other metals are a shade of dull gray, and no other element has this property. Scientists have known about gold’s unique blue-green color for years, but even expert gold traders are often unaware of this property, since such thin gold is rarely encountered. The human eye is usually effective at recognizing this exact shade of blue, but the color can also be more precisely measured with a spectrometer, which confirms the presence and amount of gold with a quantitative measure of the spectrum of the transmitted light at visible and invisible wavelengths.

Reflection Color and Spectrum Twenty-four karat gold has a distinctive color and lustre. This allows anyone to compare an unknown Aurum side by side with a verified Aurum to see if the reflected lustre and color match. This visual comparison can also be verified with a spectrometer, resulting in a more precise, quantitative measure of the reflected light over the visible and invisible spectrum.

Back Image Each Aurum is made by precisely depositing gold, atom by atom, onto a printed polyester substrate. This produces a unique effect on the reverse side of the Aurum. Where there is no printing, the gold is very shiny, but where gold atoms have fallen on print, the gold has a matte finish, making it look as though the gold itself has been printed in reverse. Simply laminating with gold-colored material will not produce this back image. Only very expensive, specialized deposition equipment will create this effect.

Electrical Resistance Gold has very low electrical resistance, which means electricity can flow through it with relative ease. This is why gold is used for special electronic applications. Thicker amounts of gold allow more free flow of electricity for a given voltage, much as a thicker pipe allows more water to flow for a given pressure. Each issue of Aurum® has a precise electrical resistance that can be measured with various methods.

Oxidation One property of gold is that it resists forming an oxide-also called a tarnish or rust. Unlike other metals, the margins of a gold Aurum will never show any tarnish or other oxidation even if they are exposed to the oxygen in air.

Serial Number Each individual Aurum has a unique serial number. You can contact Valaurum, Inc. through this website to check the serial number and verify that it matches the issue information.

Security Color Shift Thread For certain Aurum issues, a color shift thread running along the back side of the Aurum is used. This thread shows one color when viewed straight on, and a different color when viewed at an angle. This is similar to the color shift materials that have been added to currencies in recent years to deter counterfeiting. This color shift thread has our own unique set of color shift colors which can be compared to a verified Aurum.

Micro-printing Micro-printing at a resolution that cannot be reproduced by common laser printers, scanners, or photocopiers is another anti-counterfeiting technique that is used in stock certificates and currencies. Aurum also has these anti-counterfeiting features, allowing anyone with a magnifying glass to check for micro-printing in detailed parts of the image.

Recovery

The gold from an Aurum® is straightforward to recover using a fire assay. There are standard methods for recovering gold either through chemical or thermal means.

A fire assay is an inexpensive, routine procedure for jewelers and metal refiners, but it should never be attempted by inexperienced metal workers or without the correct tools. In a fire assay, the Aurum is cut into strips and rolled into a cylinder, then placed in a ceramic crucible. The material is heated until all the plastic is melted and then burned away. After cooling, the remaining material is heated again with borax and cooled again. Finally, the resulting glass is broken open, leaving a precise amount of gold.

Gold in the form of an Aurum is typically worth more than the net weight of the gold. There is a growing list of dealers interested in purchasing them.

ABOUT VALAURUM

Valaurum, Inc. was created to make precious metal ownership and investment available to all people.  Its primary product is the Aurum®, a thin layer of gold or other precious metal sandwiched between layers of protective polyester.

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CONTACT US

Valaurum, Inc.
333 NE Hancock Street | Suite 8
Portland, OR 97212    USA

Office: 503-451-6801
Fax: 503-451-6801
E-mail: sales@valaurum.com