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Minerals. Minerals: Building blocks of rocks. To be considered a mineral, a substance must: be a naturally occurring solid be formed by inorganic processes have a crystalline structure (orderly molecular arrangement have a specific chemical composition.

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minerals building blocks of rocks
Minerals: Building blocks of rocks

To be considered a mineral, a substance must:

be a naturally occurring solid

be formed by inorganic processes

have a crystalline structure (orderly molecular arrangement

have a specific chemical composition

slide3
An element is a substance that cannot be broken down into simpler substances by chemical means

Minerals are made up of one or more elements

most abundant elements of the continental crust
Most abundant elements of the continental crust

Common rock-forming minerals are mostly chemical compounds made up of these elements

How do these elements combine to make minerals?

atoms molecules and ions
Atoms, molecules and ions

Atomsare the smallest individual particle that retains the distinctive chemical properties of an element.

Molecules are the smallest individual particle that retains the distinctive chemical properties of a chemical compound. Molecules consists of 2 or more atoms.

Ions are atoms or molecules that have a net electrical charge. They attract oppositely-charged ions to form chemical compounds.

crystalline nature of minerals
Crystalline Nature of Minerals

Crystal: any substance whose atoms are arranged in a regularly repeating pattern

Crystal growth is often interrupted due to:

lack of space

rapid cooling rate

luster appearance of a mineral in reflected light
Luster: Appearance of a mineral in reflected light
  • Metallic (ex: pyrite)

Nonmetallic – glassy (hornblende)

luster appearance of a mineral in reflected light8
Luster: Appearance of a mineral in reflected light
  • Nonmetallic- waxy (ex: chert)
  • Nonmetallic –dull (another chert)
physical properties of minerals
Physical properties of minerals
  • Color
      • Generally an unreliable diagnostic property to use for mineral identification
      • Often highly variable for a given mineral due to slight changes in mineral chemistry
physical properties of minerals11
Physical properties of minerals
  • Streak
      • Color of a mineral in its powdered form
      • Helpful in distinguishing different forms of the same mineral
  • Hardness
      • Resistance of a mineral to abrasion or scratching
      • All minerals are compared to a standard scale called the Mohs scale of hardness
hardness
Hardness

Resistance of a mineral to abrasion or scratching

All minerals are compared to a standard scale called the Mohs scale of hardness

physical properties of minerals14
Physical properties of minerals
  • Cleavage
      • Tendency to break along planes of weak bonding
      • Produces flat, shiny surfaces
      • Described by resulting geometric shapes
        • Number of planes
        • Angles between adjacent planes
slide15

Common

cleavage

directions

three examples of perfect cleavage fluorite halite and calcite
Three examples of perfect cleavage – fluorite, halite, and calcite

Copyright © 2006 Pearson Prentice Hall, Inc.

classification of minerals
Classification of Minerals

Rock-forming minerals

  • Common minerals that make up most of the rocks of Earth’s crust
  • Only a few dozen members
  • Composed mainly of the 8 elements that make up over 98% of the continental crust
classification of minerals19
Classification of Minerals
  • In most cases, minerals are grouped according to the major “building block” in the chemical structure.
      • Silicates (SiO44-)
      • Oxides (O22-)
      • Sulfides (S2-)
      • Sulfates (SO42- )
      • Carbonates (CO32-)
      • Halides (Cl1- , F1- Br1- )
      • Native Elements (single element)
rock forming minerals the silicate group
Rock-forming Minerals – The Silicate Group
  • Most common mineral group due to large amounts of silicon and oxygen in Earth’s crust
  • Basic building block is the silicate ion: Four oxygen ions surrounding a much smaller silicon ion.
  • Polymerization: process by which silicate ions bond to form more complex ions, such as rings, chains, sheets or 3 dimensional frameworks.
common silicate minerals
Common Silicate minerals
  • Olivine Group
    • High temperature Fe-Mg silicate
    • Individual silicate linked together by iron and magnesium ions
    • Forms small, rounded crystals with no cleavage
common silicate minerals22
Common Silicate minerals
  • Pyroxene Group
    • Single chain structures involving iron and magnesium
    • Two distinctive cleavages at nearly 90 degrees
common silicate minerals23
Common Silicate Minerals
  • Amphibole Group
    • Double chain structures involving a variety of ions linking the silicate ion
    • Two perfect cleavages at non right angles Hornblende is the most common mineral in the amphibole group
common silicate minerals24
Common Silicate Minerals
  • Mica Group
    • Sheet structures that result in one direction of perfect cleavage
    • Biotite is the common dark colored mica.
common silicate minerals25
Common Silicate Minerals
  • Mica Group
    • Sheet structures that result in one direction of perfect cleavage
    • Muscovite is the common light colored mica.
classification of minerals26
Classification of Minerals
  • Common Silicate minerals
      • Feldspar Group
        • Most common mineral group
        • 3-dimensional framework that exhibits two directions of cleavage at 90 degrees
        • Orthoclase (potassium feldspar) and Plagioclase (sodium and calcium feldspar) are the two most common members
potassium feldspar orthoclase
Potassium feldspar - Orthoclase

Copyright © 2006 Pearson Prentice Hall, Inc.

quartz
Quartz
  • Consists entirely of silicon and oxygen (SiO2). This is a material called silica.
  • Strong bonds in all directions – cleavage absent.
  • Naturally clear, but impurities cause colors.
nonsilicate rock forming mineral groups
Nonsilicate Rock-forming mineral groups
  • Carbonates- minerals found in exoskeletons of marine organisms.

Calcite (calcium carbonate – CaCO3) is the most important carbonate mineral.

nonsilicate rock forming mineral groups33
Nonsilicate Rock-forming mineral groups
  • Sulfates – minerals containing the sulfate ion
  • Gypsum (Calcium sulfate: CaSO4 – 2H2O. A product of rapid evaporation of ancient seas.