Combined TG/DTA techniques have been used to study the thermal decomposition of R3PAuCN (where Ris ethyl, cyclohexyl, o-tolyl, m-tolyl, p-tolyl, allyl, cyanoethyl,1-naphthyl and phenyl) complexes. It was observed that all of these complexes underwant decomposition
cum redox reactions in the range of 200–600oC with evolution of both transligands, which are phosphine and cyanide, leaving
metallic gold as a residue. The thermal decomposition of o-Tol3PAuCN has revealed that this is a stepwise process. In the first step decomposition takes place with evolution of phosphine
and generation of AuCN, which in second step undergoes a redox reaction to produce metallic gold. The DTA curves have also
confirmed these results.