Silicate minerals

Silicate minerals

Silicate minerals
name colour lustre Mohs hardness specific gravity
Tectosilicates (three-dimensional networks)
feldspar (for other examples, see feldspar)
orthoclase flesh-red, white to pale yellow, red, green vitreous 6–6½ 2.6
feldspathoid (for other examples, see feldspathoid)
nepheline light-coloured; reddish, greenish, brownish vitreous to greasy 5½–6 2.6–2.7
silica (for other examples, see silica mineral)
quartz variable vitreous to greasy (coarse-grained); waxy to dull (fine-grained) 7 (a hardness standard) 2.65
zeolite (for other examples, see zeolite)
chabazite white; flesh-red vitreous 4½ 2.0–2.1
Phyllosilicates (sheet structures)
clay (for other examples, see clay mineral)
chlorite green vitreous or pearly 2–3 2.6–3.0
smectite 2.2–2.7
mica (for other examples, see mica)
apophyllite colourless, white, pink, pale yellow, or green pearly iridescent 4½–5 2.3–2.4
muscovite commonly white or colourless; light shades of green, red, or brown vitreous to silky or pearly 2–2½ 2.8–3.0
prehnite pale green to gray, white, or yellow vitreous 6–6½ 2.9–3.0
pyrophyllite white and various pale colours dull and glistening 1–2 2.6–2.9
talc colourless; white; pale or dark green; brown pearly 1 (a hardness standard) 2.6–2.8
Inosilicates (chain structures)
amphibole (for other examples, see amphibole)
common hornblende pale to dark green glassy 5–6 3.0–3.4
mullite white 3.0
pyroxene (for other examples, see pyroxene)
augite brown, green, black vitreous 5½–6 3.2–3.5
rhodonite pink to brownish red vitreous 5½–6½ 3.6–3.8
wollastonite white; also colourless, gray, or very pale green vitreous 4½–5 2.9–3.1
Cyclosilicates (ring structures)
axinite clove- or lilac-brown; pearl-gray; yellowish highly glassy 6½–7 3.3–3.4
beryl various greens; variable, including deep-green (emerald), blue-green (aquamarine), pink (morganite), yellow (heliodore) vitreous 7½–8 2.7–2.8
cordierite various blues vitreous 7 2.5–2.8
tourmaline extremely variable vitreous to resinous 7–7½ 3.0–3.2
Sorosilicates (double tetrahedral structures)
hemimorphite white, sometimes tinted bluish or greenish; yellow to brown vitreous 5 3.4–3.5
melilite colourless; grayish green; brown vitreous to resinous 5–6
gehlenite 3.1
åkermanite 2.9
Nesosilicates (independent tetrahedral structures)
andalusite pink, white, or rose-red; also variable vitreous 6½–7½ 3.1–3.2
chrysocolla green, bluish green vitreous 2–4 2.0–2.8
datolite colourless or white; also various pale tints vitreous 5–5½ 2.9–3.0
epidote yellowish green to dark green vitreous 6–7 3.3–3.5
garnet variable vitreous to resinous 6–7½
almandine 4.3
andradite 3.9
grossularite 3.6
pyrope 3.6
spessartite 4.2
uvarovite 3.9
kyanite blue; white; also variable vitreous to pearly 4–7 (variable) 3.5–3.7
olivine (for other examples, see olivines)
forsterite-fayalite series various greens and yellows vitreous 6½–7 3.2 (forsterite) to 4.4 (fayalite)
phenacite colourless; also wine-yellow, pale rose, brown vitreous 7½–8 3.0
sillimanite colourless or white; also various browns and greens vitreous to subadamantine 6½–7½ 3.2–3.3
sphene colourless, yellow, green, brown, black adamantine to resinous 5 3.4–3.6
staurolite dark red-brown; yellow-brown; brown-black subvitreous to resinous 7–7½ 3.7–3.8
thorite black; also orange-yellow (orangite) 4½–5 4.5–5.0; 5.2–5.4 (orangite)
topaz straw- or wine-yellow; white; grayish, greenish, bluish, reddish vitreous 8 (a hardness standard) 3.5–3.6
vesuvianite yellow, green, brown vitreous 6–7 3.3–3.4
willemite white or greenish yellow vitreous to resinous 5½ 3.9–4.2
zircon reddish brown, yellow, gray, green, or colourless adamantine 7½ 4.6–4.7
zoisite white; gray; green-brown; pink (thulite) vitreous 6–6½ 3.2–3.4
name habit fracture or cleavage refractive indices crystal system
Tectosilicates (three-dimensional networks)
feldspar (for other examples, see feldspar)
orthoclase twinned crystals two good cleavages of 90 degrees alpha = 1.518–1.529
beta = 1.522–1.533
gamma = 1.522–1.539 monoclinic
feldspathoid (for other examples, see feldspathoid)
nepheline small glassy crystals or grains poor cleavage omega = 1.529–1.546
epsilon = 1.526–1.542 hexagonal
silica (for other examples, see silica mineral)
quartz prismatic and rhombohedral crystals; massive conchoidal fracture omega = 1.544
epsilon = 1.553 hexagonal
zeolite (for other examples, see zeolite)
chabazite single, cubelike rhombohedrons poor cleavage omega = 1.470–1.494
epsilon = 1.470–1.494 hexagonal
Phyllosilicates (sheet structures)
clay (for other examples, see clay mineral)
chlorite large crystalline blocks; fine-grained, flaky aggregates platy cleavage alpha = 1.57–1.64
gamma = 1.575–1.645 monoclinic or triclinic
smectite broad undulating mosaic sheets that break into irregular fluffy masses of minute particles alpha = 1.480–1.590
gamma = 1.515–1.630
mica (for other examples, see mica)
apophyllite tabular, prismatic, or granular crystals; prisms and bipyramids when well-formed one perfect, one poor cleavage omega = 1.534–1.535
epsilon = 1.535–1.537 tetragonal
muscovite large tabular blocks (called books); pseudohexagonal crystals; fine-grained aggregates one perfect, platy cleavage alpha = 1.552–1.574
beta = 1.582–1.610
gamma = 1.587–1.616
prehnite rosettes of small radiating crystals; tabular or prismatic crystals; lamellar or botryoidal massive one good cleavage alpha = 1.611–1.632
beta = 1.615–1.642
gamma = 1.632–1.665 orthorhombic
pyrophyllite lamellar massive; granular to compact massive one perfect cleavage alpha = 1.534–1.556
beta = 1.586–1.589
gamma = 1.596–1.601 monoclinic
talc compact foliated masses one perfect cleavage alpha = 1.539–1.553
beta = 1.589–1.594
gamma = 1.589–1.600 monoclinic
Inosilicates (chain structures)
amphibole (for other examples, see amphibole)
common hornblende massive one good cleavage of 56 degrees alpha = 1.615–1.705
beta = 1.618–1.714
gamma = 1.632–1.730 monoclinic
mullite elongated prismatic crystals; melts one distinct cleavage alpha = 1.642–1.653
beta = 1.644
gamma = 1.654–1.679 orthorhombic
pyroxene (for other examples, see pyroxene)
augite short, thick, tabular crystals one good cleavage of 87 degrees alpha = 1.671–1.735
beta = 1.672–1.741
gamma = 1.703–1.761 monoclinic
rhodonite rounded tabular crystals; cleavable to compact massive; embedded grains two perfect cleavages alpha = 1.711–1.738
beta = 1.715–1.741
gamma = 1.724–1.751 triclinic
wollastonite cleavable, fibrous, or compact massive; tabular crystals one perfect, two good cleavages alpha = 1.616–1.640
beta = 1.628–1.650
gamma = 1.631–1.653 triclinic
Cyclosilicates (ring structures)
axinite broad, sharp-edged, wedge-shaped crystals; lamellar massive one good cleavage alpha = 1.674–1.693
beta = 1.681–1.701
gamma = 1.684–1.704 triclinic
beryl long hexagonal crystals conchoidal to uneven fracture omega = 1.569–1.598
epsilon = 1.565–1.590 hexagonal
cordierite short prismatic crystals; embedded grains; compact massive one distinct cleavage alpha = 1.522–1.558
beta = 1.524–1.574
gamma = 1.527–1.578 orthorhombic
tourmaline parallel or radiating groups of striated, elongated hexagonal prisms, often rounded or barrel-shaped; massive subconchoidal to uneven fracture omega = 1.635–1.675
epsilon = 1.610–1.650 hexagonal
Sorosilicates (double tetrahedral structures)
hemimorphite sheaflike crystal aggregates one perfect cleavage alpha = 1.614
beta = 1.617
gamma = 1.636 orthorhombic
melilite short prismatic crystals; tablets one distinct cleavage tetragonal
gehlenite omega = 1.669
epsilon = 1.658
åkermanite omega = 1.632
epsilon = 1.640
Nesosilicates (independent tetrahedral structures)
andalusite coarse prisms; massive one good cleavage of 89 degrees alpha = 1.629–1.640
beta = 1.633–1.644
gamma = 1.638–1.650 orthorhombic
chrysocolla crusts; botryoidal masses conchoidal fracture omega = 1.46
epsilon = 1.54 orthorhombic?
datolite tabular or short prismatic crystals; botryoidal and globular or divergent and radiating massive conchoidal to uneven fracture alpha = 1.622–1.626
beta = 1.649–1.654
gamma = 1.666–1.670 monoclinic
epidote striated elongated crystals; fibrous or granular massive; disseminated one perfect cleavage alpha = 1.712–1.756
beta = 1.720–1.789
gamma = 1.723–1.829 monoclinic
garnet crystals; irregular embedded grains; compact, granular, or lamellar massive subconchoidal fracture isometric
almandine n = 1.830
andradite n = 1.887
grossularite n = 1.734
pyrope n = 1.714
spessartite n = 1.800
uvarovite n = 1.86
kyanite elongated tabular, bladed crystals one good, one perfect cleavage alpha = 1.712–1.718
beta = 1.719–1.723
gamma = 1.727–1.734 triclinic
olivine (for other examples, see olivines)
forsterite-fayalite series flattened crystals; compact or granular massive; embedded grains one indistinct cleavage alpha = 1.631–1.827
beta = 1.651–1.869
gamma = 1.670–1.879 orthorhombic
phenacite rhombohedral crystals one distinct cleavage omega = 1.654
epsilon = 1.670 hexagonal
sillimanite vertically striated, square prisms; long, slender parallel crystal groups to fibrous or columnar massive one perfect cleavage alpha = 1.654–1.661
beta = 1.658–1.670
gamma = 1.673–1.684 orthorhombic
sphene wedge-shaped crystals, often twinned; compact massive one good cleavage alpha = 1.843–1.950
beta = 1.870–2.034
gamma = 1.943–2.110 monoclinic
staurolite cruciform twins one distinct cleavage alpha = 1.739–1.747
beta = 1.744–1.754
gamma = 1.750–1.762 monoclinic
thorite square prismatic crystals; small masses one distinct cleavage omega = 1.8 tetragonal
topaz prismatic crystals one perfect cleavage alpha = 1.606–1.629
beta = 1.609–1.631
gamma = 1.616–1.638 orthorhombic
vesuvianite prismatic crystals; massive subconchoidal to uneven fracture omega = 1.703–1.752
epsilon = 1.700–1.746 tetragonal
willemite hexagonal prismatic crystals; disseminated grains; fibrous massive one easy cleavage omega = 1.691–1.714
epsilon = 1.719–1.732 hexagonal
zircon square prismatic crystals; irregular forms; grains conchoidal fracture omega = 1.923–1.960
epsilon = 1.968–2.015 tetragonal
zoisite striated prismatic crystals; columnar to compact massive one perfect cleavage alpha = 1.685–1.705
beta = 1.688–1.710
gamma = 1.697–1.725 orthorhombic
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Universalium. 2010.

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