Earth Sciences 1022A/B Lecture 2: Earth Science Lecture January 12 2016

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JANUARY 12 2016 LECTURE
MINERALS
Minerals are solid chemical compounds that combine to form rocks
They are found in nature and vary in atomic bonding, molecular structure and element
composition
oAll of these determine the physical and chemical properties
This allows for identification
An infinite number of chemical combinations are possible
oAlmost 4700 natural minerals are known
Only about 20 minerals dominate the Earth’s crust
Common Minerals
Natural solid compounds found commonly in Earth’s crust
SILICATES
Most abundant
Made of the silicon-oxygen tetrahedron
Bonded to various metallic cations
Ferromagnesian (dark) silicates
oContain Fe+2 and Mg+2 cations
oOlivine
Covalently-bonded silica tetrahedral surrounded by Fe, Mg cations
Fe, Mg substitute for each other to form a group of minerals
Can vary from being pure magnesium to pure iron
oEach one is given a new name
oPyroxene
Single chains of tetrahedral ionically bonded to metallic cations
Nearly right angle cleavage
oAmphibole
Double chains of tetrahedral ionically bonded to metallic cations
120° cleavage
oBiotite
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