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hematite - teaching student specimens of submetallic to metallic gray hematite - Unit of 5 specimens

$ 4.20

Hematite is the most important iron ore. It occurs in extensive sedimentary deposits, around gas vents associated with volcanism, and in contact metamorphic deposits. These specimens are from a contact between limestone and a granitic intrusion. Often, carbonates are impure, containing iron as an impurity. The metamorphism caused by the igneous intrusion releases the iron to form an economic deposit.

These specimens were mined just outside the Baxter Mine where hematite is mined by the California Portland Cement Co. as an additive in cement-making. it is submetallic to metallic in luster, gray in color. Hematite can also be earthy or nonmetallic. Looking at this hematite, students identifying minerals with a key will understand they should start in the "submetallic to metallic" section. Students should see more than one hematite variety and should know that the characteristic reddish streak readily identifies the mineral. It would be instructive for students to compare this hematite with the brown nonmetallic hematite we offer. They look quite different, but both produce the distinctive rust red streak when rubbed on a hard unglazed ceramic tile.

Hematite should be compared with magnetite (black streak) and with bog iron ore, limonite, characterized by its mustard yellow streak. The crystallized "specular" variety of hematite can be confused with magnetite. The streak will tell a student which is which. The name hematite is derived from the Greek word for blood, in allusion to the color of the powdered mineral.

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