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  1. 1. The world of minerals
  2. 2. What determines if something is a mineral? inorganic Naturally occurring solid Crystal structure definite chemical make-up Video clip “What is a mineral?’ Media player quicktime
  3. 3. What do you think? Which of these are minerals? gold water coal rubies petroleum diamonds Here is a hard one – What about ice? All minerals have a definite chemical combination – view media player video Same video - quicktime
  4. 4. How do geologists identify minerals? One way is color!
  5. 5. A mineral's hardness helps identify it. Not all minerals have the same hardness. Some you can easily scratch with your fingernail! /vwdocs/vwlessons
  6. 6. Streak test Streak is the color of a mineral powder. Many minerals appear a different color when powdered than they do as a big piece. The color may be entirely different, or it may be a different shade.
  7. 7. What is luster? Copyright © Dr. Richard Busch How do these look different? Courtesy United States Geological Survey Courtesy United States Geological Survey Each reflects light differently – that is luster! Which of these words would you use to describe these minerals? Glassy, metallic, dull, silky, waxy, pearly
  8. 8. Minerals also have different densities. This means for equal size, they have their own special weight. Which one is worth more? How could you tell? The first one is topaz (worth a lot) and the second is citrine quartz (not worth a lot). A scientist would measure their densities and they would be different!
  9. 9. Minerals also have different cystal patterns Copyright © Dr. Richard Busch Link to crystal video media player quicktime
  10. 10. Another property is the way a mineral breaks. Cleavage means it breaks the same way every time. Fracture means it breaks in a random pattern that cannot be predicted. Calcite and halite break a special way. Quartz and chert break in a random pattern. There is not way to predict how they break.
  11. 11. Minerals have many properties that together help us identify them. Click here for a video clip on mineral properties media player Quicktime Another video clip on identifying minerals Media player Quicktime