Jump to navigation Jump to search
Palladium Print by Stieglitz 24.1718


Palladium print by Stieglitz 24.1728

A silvery-white, metallic element. Palladium occurs in trace amounts in Gold, Nickel, Platinum, and Copper ores. Palladium was isolated in 1803 by an English chemist named William Hyde Wollaston. It is mined in Siberia, the Ural Mountains, Ontario, and South Africa. Palladium is soft, ductile, and malleable. It is resistant to tarnishing and unaffected by acids and pollutants. Palladium is alloyed with gold to form white gold. It is used for electrical contacts, jewelry, dental crowns, and surgical instruments.

In photography, the palladiotype is a less-common variant of the platinotype. Tfter World War I, the rising cost and the consequent shortage of commercial platinum paper, resulted in photographers using the much cheaper palladium to produce similar effects. The cost of palladium also started to rise and eventually around 1930 the process was abandoned in favor of more economical alternatives.

Characteristics of a palladium print, compared to a platinum print, are a warmer tone, a large tonal range (up to D= 2.1) with deeper blacks and a softer image with delicate highlights (Wikipedia 2020).

Synonyms and Related Terms

Pd; palladium (Fr.); palladio (It.); Paládio (Port.); paladio (Esp.); Palladium (Deut.); palladium (Ned.); paládio (Port.)


  • Noncombustible except as dust.
  • Fisher Scientific: MSDS

Physical and Chemical Properties

Composition Pd (atomic no. 46)
CAS 7440-05-3
Mohs Hardness 4.8
Melting Point 1554 C
Density 12.02 g/ml
Molecular Weight atomic wt = 106.4
Boiling Point 3167 C

Resources and Citations

  • G.S.Brady, Materials Handbook, McGraw-Hill Book Co., New York, 1971 Comment: p. 571
  • Ralph Mayer, A Dictionary of Art Terms and Techniques, Harper and Row Publishers, New York, 1969 (also 1945 printing)
  • Chemical & Engineering News, American Chemical Society, Washington DC, 81 (36) , Sept. 8, 2003 Comment: Larry Overman, p. 116

Retrieved from ""