A short review will be given of the methods by which mercuric iodide is prepared and purified to obtain material suitable for the growth of single crystals. The method used in our laboratory to grow single crystals up to 1,000 grams in weight from the vapor will be discussed. The effects of gravity on the growth process will be described.
A crystal growth system suitable for operation in the reduced gravity environment of space was designed, and crystal growth experiments were performed during the flights of Spacelab 3 (April 1985) and the International Microgravity Laboratory (IML-1) (January 1992). The structural quality and electronic properties of the ground-based and spacegrown crystals were compared, and the results will be presented.