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Gallium and InterSolar 2012

As far as elements are concerned, gallium is second only to indium in my heart.

I wanted a very special image of gallium material to use on our website. Rounding up the gallium was no problem, however, the crucible I wanted to use (supplied by Sage Industrial Sales)  was in a shipping crate on the way to InterSolar 2012 three weeks ago. When I arrived at the booth to set things up, the crucible was there waiting for me (along with all the sputtering targets and other display materials) . I patiently planned to come back to the office, find the crucible, and get a good picture of gallium.

Throughout the week at InterSolar I had the chance to talk with many show attendees about gallium. We discussed everything from gallium supply to its use in CIGS thin-film photovoltaics. One gentleman actually wanted to buy some gallium for his son to experiment with.

We had a great show, and, when the week was through, I headed home. Now everything was finally in line for this gallium picture I had been thinking about. I returned to my desk and took a good look at the gallium I was about to photograph, only to notice that it was a sample I had shipped all over the world and had handled many times. This gallium did not look like fresh gallium, but, because of this aging, I like it even more. Gallium is soft and it re-melts very easily. The effects of this gave the sample a ‘worn-in’ look that I really like.

Feel free to contact me if you’d like to learn more about gallium.