71 Facts About Gallium For The Curious Chemist Mind | Kidadl


71 Facts About Gallium For The Curious Chemist Mind

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Gallium, with the atomic number 31 and the symbol Ga, is a chemical element that belongs to the periodic table.

Paul-Émile Lecoq de Boisbaudran, a French scientist, developed it in 1875. Gallium belongs to the periodic table in group 13, with atomic number 31, and it has properties with other metals in the class, such as aluminum, indium, and thallium.

If you are a chemistry enthusiast, and generally find all the elements in nature fascinating, you will agree that gallium is one of those very interesting metals even though it cannot generally be found in nature. It is mostly obtained by refining zinc and aluminum. If you look for it, you can get it from stores for your science projects. You have to store it in a plastic bag or a flexible container.

Because Lecoq, meaning literally 'the rooster', corresponds to 'Gallus' in Latin, Lecoq de Boisbaudran called the element after both France, 'Gaul' in Latin, and himself. On the backdrop of an ancient atlas of France is a gleaming metal chicken.

Gallium is a smooth, silvery-white metal that looks like aluminum. Dmitri Mendeleev, the Soviet scientist who produced the first periodic table of the elements, postulated the presence of gallium in 1871. Mendeleev noticed a hole in his chart near its atomic number and labeled the missing piece eka: aluminum since its placement was one space away from the table's aluminum.

Mendeleev predicted that perhaps the missing or new element (gallium) would have molecular characteristics similar to aluminum, and he was correct. Solid gallium or pure gallium element has a low melting point of temperature 85 °F (29.4 °C) and an abnormally high boiling point of temperature 3,999 °F (2,203.9 °C).

Gallium is a rare element that can't be found in natural abundance, unlike most metals. It may be found in the Earth's crust in a concentration of 16.9 parts per million. It's made from bauxite and, on rare occasions, sphalerite. Coal, diaspore, and germanite all contain gallium.

Gallium is not ever discovered as a free element or in significant quantities in any minerals. Rather, it may be found in tiny levels in a variety of substances, such as zinc ores and bauxite.

Due to surface corrosion, gallium metal acquires a blue hue. Gallium expands upon solidification and cools rapidly, retaining a liquid at any temperature ranging from 32 °F (-1.7 °C), which is uncommon for metal with such a low melting point and high boiling point. It turns silvery white when it's in the liquid phase.

Gallium is a chemical that has passed through the transition state. These are transition metals that fall among transition metals and metalloids (non-metals) on the periodic table. Transition metals have certain characteristics with post-transition metals, although they are lighter and flow less well.

The elements diaspore, sphalerite, germanite, bauxite, and coal all contain small quantities of gallium. Most gallium is made as a by-product of the zinc purification process. A mixture of gallium (III) hydroxide in potassium hydroxide can be electrolyzed to produce the element.

Apart from ore, gallium may be derived through anthropogenic processes including such Bayer process caustic liquor, a result of bauxite treatment, flue ash collected from the particulate mechanism in electrolytic aluminum facilities, zinc refining wastes, gallium material waste, and coal dust.

Gallium is one of those non-toxic chemical elements that may be handled by people. It's been touched on several occasions only for the joy of witnessing it melt under the temperature of a human palm. This is noted, though, to create a stain on the palms. Yet, certain gallium complexes can be extremely hazardous.

If you like what you are reading, why not check out the characteristics of alkali metals and what is the only metallic element that is liquid at room temperature? as well!

Fun Facts About Gallium

Read on to learn some fun facts about gallium.

The three properties of gallium include that it swells as it freezes. Water is yet another substance that exhibits this tendency. This is due to its unique characteristics and atomic number. Gallium arsenide is largely employed in the electronics industry. Incredibly bright blue Light Emitting Diodes (LED) are made with gallium arsenide.

Other than that, gallium is a fragile solid that fractures quickly at low degrees and breaks conchoidally, comparable to glass. Gallium nitrate is included in a variety of medications and is used to manage hypercalcemia, a condition that can contribute to the development of bone cancers. It was also used to maintain the crystalline structure of nuclear weapons.

Chemical Facts About Gallium For Kids

Below are some chemical facts about gallium:

The melting point of gallium is quite small. At 85 °F (29.4 °C), it dissolves and then becomes liquid gallium. In fact, if you held a solid chunk of gallium in your palm, it would dissolve.

Gallium was discovered in two violet spectral lines in a sphalerite sample by Lecoq de Boisbaudran. Utilizing electrification of the hydroxide, he was able to separate the elements.

Gallium nitride is a semiconductor element with a direct bandgap that is used to make semiconductors like transistors and diodes.

Gallium is a blue-gray element with an orthorhombic crystalline structure, and pure gallium has a beautiful silvery tint.

Like mercury, cesium, and rubidium, gallium is solid at ambient temperature but turns fluid when warmed sufficiently.

Gallium is a soft element that may be sliced with a knife.

Gallium is a really interesting metal and its properties and behavior make it unique.

Facts About Gallium's Characteristics

Due to strong interactions, gallium has a large boiling point. High cohesive forces keep the framework intact, that is when the cohesive forces grow, the metallic bonding strengthens, and the boiling point rises.

Gallium swells as it starts to cool, therefore it's best to keep the element in a plastic bag or a stretchy vessel instead of a glass vessel to prevent it from breaking. Gallium soaks glass, therefore keeping the specimen in plastic helps to prevent sample losses.

Facts About Gallium's Uses

Gallium was first used in elevated thermometers and the construction of easy-to-melt metal alloys for these qualities.

Elements like gallium have many interesting characteristics, and chemistry has found many fascinating aspects about this element. In the 1960s, the invention of a gallium-based band structure semiconductor led to the production of cellphones and data-centric networks, which is today one of the most well-known uses for gallium-based devices.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for 71 facts about gallium for the curious chemist mind, then why not take a look at why do metals conduct electricity, or why do metals have high melting points.

<p>With a Master of Arts in English, Rajnandini has pursued her passion for the arts and has become an experienced content writer. She has worked with companies such as Writer's Zone and has had her writing skills recognized by publications such as The Telegraph. Rajnandini is also trilingual and enjoys various hobbies such as music, movies, travel, philanthropy, writing her blog, and reading classic British literature.&nbsp;</p>

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