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Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

US company launches FeaturePrint technology to create a digital fingerprint for gold


Gold Prices

Tue 11 Jun 2024 | 11:58 PM
Waleed Farouk

The high demand for gold has led to the use of artificial intelligence technology to achieve transparency in the gold markets, as the cooperation between Argor-Heraeus and the American company Alitheon has led to the implementation of steps that ensure the tracking of gold from its extraction from the mines until it is put on the market as products.

Alitheon is an American company specializing in authenticating physical products using artificial intelligence (AI), and has launched the FeaturePrint technology, which is a visual program that creates a digital fingerprint for gold bars. Thus, the technology enables products to be authenticated, identified and traceable.

“Even if it seems that way at first glance - no two items are the same, even if they are from the same production line. We benefit from these slight differences,” says Roy Ganzarski, CEO of Alitheon. “We are also proud to be able to enhance transparency in the precious metals industry through our cooperation with Argor-Heraeus.”

To create a digital fingerprint of an object, it is enough to take a photo, through a visual AI program that creates a digital twin based on the unique surface detail data of the object, for this, the AI ​​uses more than 1000 visual fixation points, in this way, the tracking and monitoring of gold does not depend on stamping, engraving, placing stickers or digital sequences, which are easy to counterfeit.

Buyers or investors can identify the gold bar by photo and can receive additional information stored during authentication such as the gold factory or product-specific information about sustainability such as its carbon footprint, this allows the end user to track the exact source of the goods and whether it is in fact the product purchased.

With FeaturePrint, all brokers can also authenticate the gold bar, each authentication creates a new digital fingerprint that is compared to the previous ones, with each scan, traders can retrieve the stored information or add additional data.

"With Alitheon technology, we are closing the gaps in gold traceability, providing more transparency from the extraction of gold from the mine until it is marketed to the end user," said Robin Kolvenbach, co-CEO of Argor-Heraeus. “For years, we have been working to increase transparency in the gold business with the help of new technologies and innovations. In addition to AI, we also use DNA tags and PCR tests for traceability from mine to refinery.”

In addition to AI, Argor-Heraeus has been working with DNA PCR tests since 2019 to increase traceability of gold. The DNA tagging technology used in this process comes from the Swiss startup Haelixa.

Argor-Heraeus tags raw gold bars at the mine with a DNA tag. Upon arrival at the refinery, these tags can be verified through PCR testing. Each mine has its own DNA tag, which is only accessible from the specific mine. Once the origin is confirmed, the bars are further processed in separate production lines. This helps avoid mixing gold from different origins within the refinery. With these separate production processes, Argor-Heraeus ensures that products can be traced back to their source even after smelting and that they comply with global regulations on the origin of gold.