Gallium is a chemical element with symbol Ga and atomic number 31. Soft, silvery, and brittle at low temperatures, gallium becomes a hard, silvery, shiny metal at temperatures below 29.76 °C (85.57 °F).
In nature, gallium is found only in trace amounts as the pure element. The metal is a semiconductor that exhibits more than 30 different phases that are used for electronic devices such as light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and laser diodes. It may, however, be quite rare to get it cheaply.
Here are some of the factors that determine gallium price in today’s world:
The market demand for gallium metal is affected by its use in industrial production. The most important end-use market for gallium is semiconductor manufacturing. Gallium arsenide (GaAs) is used in all types of semiconductors, including solar cells, lasers and light-emitting diodes (LEDs). Other applications include night-vision goggles, phosphors and thermoelectric devices. The demand for gallium metal is also influenced by the growth of the global electronics industry. As a result, the price of a 1kg of gallium metal tends to rise when there are shortages in supply or when there is an increase in demand for electronics products.
Availability of Supply
The availability of supply also affects the price of a 1kg of gallium metal because it determines how much supply exists within an economy at any given time. If there is an increase in supply and/or a decrease in demand then this can lead to lower prices because more units will be available on the open market at any given time. However, if supply decreases with an increasing demand, its price will definitely shoot higher.
Your Point of Purchase
The price of a 1kg of gallium metal can vary significantly based on when you purchase it and where you purchase it from. For example, if you buy it directly from an industrial supplier or manufacturer, then the price will be lower than if you buy it from a middleman who buys from multiple sources. The same goes for buying in bulk versus smaller quantities.
The Metal’s Grade
The price of a 1kg of gallium metal can also vary depending on how pure or impure it is. A higher purity level means that there are fewer impurities present in the material — and therefore less waste. This further translates into lower production costs and therefore lower prices for consumers because they don’t have to pay for all those extra materials that were used up during production but aren’t actually contributing anything valuable to their product anyway.
The cost of producing gallium is quite high; therefore, its production rate is low compared to other metals such as gold or silver which are mined from open pits or underground mines. The production rate for gallium is at around 700 tons per year; though it still is not enough to meet the demands from consumers. Therefore, resulting to an increased price.
At the end of the day, one of the best resources for information about 1 kg of gallium metal is the price charts available for gold and silver. Since each is a precious metal, their price can be expected to move in similar ways. At the same time, however, there are still some differences that may affect the price of gallium metal. These include its current level of production as well as its relative rarity. So, until more methods and facilities are developed to make it easier to extract, the supply will likely stay somewhat limited compared to elements like copper or iron.