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Pyrite

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Quartz (SiO2)

quartz mineral specimen

Cold as ice?

The two most abundant elements in the Earth’s crust are silicon and oxygen which combine to create silica.   Silica minerals are found around the world often as quartz. Different types of quartz have been used for thousands of years to make jewellery and decorative items. This includes amethyst and opal.

Clear quartz or rock crystal looks so much like ice, that for a long time it was thought to be a form of ice that wouldn’t melt. Although quartz is basically colourless, impurities cause a huge varieties of colours to be seen, from yellow citrine to purple amethyst.

Silicon forms the basis of a modern globalised computer industry. Silica based rocks and minerals have many uses including building materials and in the manufacture of glass and pottery. Since the mid 18th century, Cornwall has been a major producer of China Clay (kaolin) another silica mineral.

Data Panel:
 
colour
Clear
hardness
7
Crystal system
Trigonal
Crystal habit
Hexagonal prisms
Lustre
Vitreous or resinous
Streak
White
Fracture
Conchoidal
Other characteristics
 

View this mineral in 3D

 

Photograph reproduced with the kind permission of Pat Comber

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Comment left by TT on 2012-05-16 16:16:22

Hi, I have a quartz like the picture Sio2 above and am cleaning it with iron out. It is from Arkansas.

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