HANK MORGAN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY. HANK MORGAN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY.
Technician wearing breathing mask & full protective clothing holds an ingot of gallium arsenide (GaAs) semiconductor material. GaAs is made by fusing gallium metal rods & arsenic nuggets together in a furnace - hence necessity of protection against volatile & highly toxic arsenic. Gallium arsenide possesses similar semiconductor properties to silicon (current mainstay of microelectronics industry), but has the advantage of being electronically "faster" & therefore potentially more efficient as a microprocessor material.
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