What are the properties of minerals
In this article I will provide you general information about the minerals and properties, their uses as a gemstone. I will tell you about properties of mineral, colors, qualities, fracture, clarity and rarity. When gemstone is rare it is more valuable than other e.g. Diamond is used as a gemstone and it is known as precious gemstone and more valuable than other precious gemstone because of its beautiful color, clarity and uniqueness. Chemical composition of minerals is also very important in the identification of gemstones and their are other properties of minerals regarding this topic.
There are almost two hundred types of recognized gemstones and most of these are minerals and cut from crystals (basic structural and functional unit of rock) which is occur in nature. To get identification as a gem, the specimen should be tough and hard and have resistance against scratching and beautiful color and clarity. Value of gemstone is based on rare quality and its rarity.
Gemstone Colors (minerals and gems)
As mentioned in previous article that gems appear in different color due to absorbency of white light by the minerals structures. Most gems are possessed color by a small number of metals present either as necessary constituents of the atomic structure, just like in Idiochromatic gems or impurities, as like in Allochromatic gems. The most general minerals affecting color are; Titanium, Chromium, Manganese, Iron and Copper.
The intense red color of Ruby and the brilliant green color of Emerald are produced by Chromium and Iron is responsible to produce the more subtle red, yellow and blue colors in Garnet, Peridot, Sapphire, Spinel and Chrysoberyl. The best Sapphires have got its color by both Iron and Titanium, however, copper is responsible for the green and blue of Malachite and Turquoise, and Manganese is responsible for the pink color of Rhodonite.
Types of Gems based on minerals
Some minerals provide us more than one gem type and this is because of the impurity, which is only a minimum amount, is not always the same and may even be a combination of different impurities. The interaction of the atomic structure and the impurities will also have an effect on color. For example, the Aluminium Oxide which is mineral Corundum is colorless in its pure form, whereas if Chromium is present in mineral Corundum it becomes the rich red color of Ruby and if Titanium is present in Corundum mineral it becomes the intense blue color of Sapphire. Emerald and Aquamarine are different colors of the mineral Beryl, which can also be yellow, orange and green. Quartz show a profusion of colors, optical and pattern effects unsurpassed by any other gem e.g. Purple Quartz is Amethyst, yellow quartz is Citrine; brown quartz is Smoky quartz and pink is Rose Quartz. Agate, Aventurine and Tiger Eye are some of the Quartz gems that show many unusual colors and effects.
Treatment of Minerals
Minerals are often treated with heat, radiations, waxing/oiling and fracture filling to enhance the clarity or color of the stone which include physical properties of rocks and minerals. Depending on the extent and type of treatment, they can change the value and quality of the stone. Several treatments are used mostly because the resulting gem is not unstable, while others are not accepted most generally because the gem color is not stable and may revert to its original tone. Almost same goes for the properties of metallic minerals.