The element Magnesium (Mg) is quite common and a vital element to human life, but it is a highly reactive metal that is not naturally found in its pure form. Most chemistry students know that the pure metal burns bright white and is an active ingredient in flares, but few people ever see it in the form of pure refined crystals. Depending on the refining method used, magnesium can take many forms, and the results can be quite spectacular!
A 24 cm long chunk of vapor-deposited magnesium crystals produced by the Pidgeon process at a refinery in China. (Source: Warut Roonguthai)
This 6 cm tall magnesium cluster was obtained by a process called distillation, which produces a unique crystal-like growth pattern. (Source: imagens)
A close-up of a 3 cm wide synthetic magnesium crystal cluster, also created using the distillation method. (source: Paulslab)