Mighty Minerals Mineral Characteristics . Minerals are all around us. Fascinating Fact. The elements oxygen, silicon, aluminum, iron, magnesium, calcium, potassium, and sodium make up 99 percent of all minerals on Earth. . Fascinating Fact. BACKGROUND :
Mighty Minerals Mineral Characteristics Minerals are all around us
Fascinating Fact • The elements oxygen, silicon, aluminum, iron, magnesium, calcium, potassium, and sodium make up 99 percent of all minerals on Earth.
Fascinating Fact BACKGROUND: • Scientists have identified over 2000 different minerals in the earth's crust. • 95% of the earth's crust is composed of about a dozen different rock-forming minerals.
What is a mineral? • All natural earth materials are made of minerals or a combination of minerals • Minerals are the building blocks of rocks. • To be called a mineral it must have the following 5 characteristics:
Mineral characteristic #1 –Naturally Occurring Occurs naturally • not artificial or man-made • These are processes that occur on or inside Earth with no input from humans.
Mineral characteristic #2 Solid • All solids have a definite volume and shape. • not a liquid or a gas Platinum (It might take two billion tons of ore to produce one pound of platinum!)
Mineral Characteristic #3Definite chemical composition • Made of one or more elements. • Element • Some minerals like gold or silver are made of only one element. • A substance such as iron, oxygen, and gold which cannot be separated or broken down by ordinary chemical methods. • All the elements are listed on the periodic table. For example: Gold = Au or Lead = Pb) • Compound: • Other minerals are combinations of two or more elements which are chemically combined. • For Example • Quartz = SiO2 • Calcite = CaCO3 Image from http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/staticfiles/NGC/StaticFiles/Images/Show/38xx/382x/3822_history-of-gold-4_04700300.jpg Image from http://periodictable.com/Samples/082.28/s12s.JPG Image from http://skywalker.cochise.edu/wellerr/mingem/gemtp/smokyquartz/6xx-smoky-quartz6-rakhi.jpg Image from http://www.minerals.net/mineral/carbonat/calcite/images/9salmon.htm
Mineral Characteristic #4 Crystalline solids • Atoms arranged in an orderly pattern (Crystals) • Crystalline means that atoms are arranged in a pattern that is repeated over and over again. • For example, graphite’s atoms are arranged in layers and halite's are arranged in cubes. • The crystal system a mineral has can help a geologist identify the mineral. • Brain pop
There are six major crystal systems, which classify minerals according to their crystal structures.
Crystals from Magma • When magma cools slowly, the crystals that form are generally large enough to see with the unaided eye. • When magma cools rapidly, the crystals that form will be small.
Crystals from solutions • Crystals also can form from minerals dissolved in water. • When water evaporates, minerals left behind come together to form crystals.
Mineral characteristic #5 Inorganic • Not alive and never alive • This means that they aren’t made by life processes.