Periodic Table


Atomic number: 31
Atomic weight: 69.723
Symbol: Ga
Group number: 13
Electronic configuration: [Ar].3d10.4s2.4p1


It is the only metal, except for mercury, caesium, and rubidium, which can be liquid near room temperatures; this makes possible its use in high-temperature thermometers. It has one of the longest liquid ranges of any metal and has a low vapour pressure even at high temperatures. Ultra-pure gallium has a beautiful, silvery appearance, and the solid metal exhibits a conchoidal fracture similar to glass. The metal expands on solidifying; therefore, it should not be stored in glass or metal containers, as they may break as the metal solidifies. High-purity gallium is attacked only slowly by mineral acids. Gallium arsenide is capable of converting electricity directly into coherent light and gallium arsenide is a key component of LEDs (light emitting diodes).

General information

Discoveror: Paul-Emile Lecoq de Boisbaudran
Date discovered: 1875
Discovered at: France
Meaning of name: From the Latin word "Gallia" meaning "France" and perhaps also from the Latin word "gallus", (the cock, a translation of Lecoq, the discoveror of gallium)

Physical data

Standard state: »CP


This section gives some data for naturally occurring isotopes.
Nominal mass Accurate mass % natural abundance
69Ga68.925580 (3)60.108 (9)
71Ga70.9247005 (25)39.892 (9)

Further Information

Copyright 1997 Mark Winter
Department of Chemistry at the University of Sheffield, Sheffield S3 7HF, England.

The current version of this document is at http://www.shef.ac.uk/~chem/web-elements-I/Ga.html