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What is gallium?

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Gallium is a chemical element represented by the symbol Ga. It is a weak silver-colored metal. It is a solid below 24.85 C, but it melts at only 29.77 C. It is in group 13 of the periodic table

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Dmitri Mendeleev predicted the existence of gallium in 1871 and suggested that its properties would be similar to aluminium. However, it wasn’t until 1875 that gallium was discovered by Paul-Emile Lecoq de Boisbaudran who used electrolysis to separate it out from a solution.

Elemental gallium does not freely occur in nature, but instead occurs as gallium salts in trace amounts of bauxite and zinc ores. Gallium is often produced as a byproduct during the extraction of aluminum from bauxite. Purification of bauxite by the Bayer process results in a high concentration of gallium. Using electrolysis with a mercury electrode further concentrates the gallium output, and using a stainless steel cathode for electrolysis results in liquid gallium. Pure gallium should not be stored in metal or glass containers because the containers will break as the gallium begins to cool and expand. Although gallium is a solid at near-room temperature, it undergoes phase transition to a liquid at slightly less than 30 C. It has one of the longest liquid ranges of any metal; it boils at 2,205 C.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is gallium sulfate?

    A:

    Gallium sulfate is an inorganic compound with a molar mass of 427.63 grams. It has the chemical formula Ga2(SO4)3 and is comprised of two gallium atoms bonded to three sulfate ions. The overall charge of the compound is neutral, with each gallium atom having a charge of +3 and each sulfate ion having a charge of -2.

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  • Q:

    How many valence electrons does gallium have?

    A:

    Gallium has three valence electrons. One can find this by looking at the electron configuration, which is Ga:[Ar] 4s2 3d10 4p1. In a chemical reaction, one can lose the electrons in the 4s and 4p subshell, and the total number of electrons in these subshells is three.

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  • Q:

    What is the normal phase of gallium?

    A:

    The normal phase of the element Gallium is solid. This silvery-blue metal has a melting point of 29.76 degrees Celsius or 302.91 Kelvin and a boiling point of 2200 degree Celsius or 2473 Kelvin. Therefore, it remains a solid substance at average room temperature.

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  • Q:

    What is the electron configuration for gallium?

    A:

    The electron configuration for gallium is 1s22s22p6<3s23p63d104s24p1, according to the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility Office of Science Education. Gallium is a metallic element with an atomic weight of 69.723 amu.

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