Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Mineral and Rocks’ Category

The destination of my second Georgia Mineral Society field trip is Amos cunningham Farm located in Due West/Antreville Area, South Carolina.  The collection site is known for its beryl, amethyst and smoky quartz.  The site is flat to rolling land of South Carolina red clay.  The digging areas have been machine trenched down to white kaolite veins that have the beryl and quartz crystals.  Dirt and rock removed from the trenches and piled up, also contain beryl and are good places to search.

Some macro shot of the specimen collected in the field trip:

a Piece of Emeral (a variety of mineral beryl) is included in smoky quartz

a Piece of Emeral (a variety of mineral beryl) is included in smoky quartz

Smoky Quartz

Smoky Quartz

Felspar

Felspar can be found plenty in the kaolite vein where the smoky quartz and emerald exist.

Pumice

Aside from felspar, there are also plenty of Pumice in the kaolite vein. Pumice is a very porus and light rock. If you put them in water, you can heal the bubbling sound.

Flaky Mica

A Piece of Flaky Mica

Images of the collection under stereo microscope:

Emeral

Emeral: The picture shows part of the hexgonal shape

Emeral Side View

Emeral Side View

Smoky Quartz

Smoky Quartz at Amos Cummingham Form has gray and greenish color

Felspar

Felspar

There is a piece of biotite on the surface of the felspar

There is a piece of biotite on the surface of the felspar

a Sheet of Mica

a Sheet of Mica

The macro shot was captured by Olympus Stylus 7010 camera in super macro mode.  The photomicrograph was the specimens are taken with Tucsen Microscope Camera from Ample Scientific SM-Plus-24 Stereo Microscope.

Read Full Post »

dissolve mineral and crystalized the minerals is another way to prepare the specimen for polarized light microscope examination.  Yesterday, I dissolve several common ingredients for food seasonings and put a few drops on the slides to allow them to dry: table salt (Sodium Chloride), Sugar and Alum hydrated potassium aluminium sulfate.  I also drop a few drops of methylene blue.  Today they are all pretty much dried out – The sugar is still somewhat sticky but I can clearly see the sugar crystals in snow flake shape.

White Sugar Crystal under Polarized Light Microscope

White Sugar Crystal under Polarized Light Microscope

White Sugar Crystal under Polarized Light

White Sugar Crystal under Polarized Light (This is the first photo with some post processing by adjusting the gamma to 0.6 from 1.0)

 The color of the sugar crystal shows richer color when I adjust the gamma correction.  The loss of color must have been caused by the manual shooting mode. 

White sugar crystal under polarized light microscope

White sugar crystal under polarized light microscope

White sugar crystal under polarized light microscope

White sugar crystal under polarized light microscope

Alum crystal under polarized light microscope

Alum crystal under polarized light microscope

Table salt under polarized light microscope

Table salt under polarized light microscope

Methylene blue under polarized light microscope

Methylene blue under polarized light microscope

The photos are taken with Canon EOS T1i with Manual mode (ISO 400, exposure 4 sec, auto white balance).  Nexcope CM701 converted polarized light microscope was used for observation.

Read Full Post »

The beach sands collected from Clearwater beach contains many transparent crystals.  These crystals are very hard.  Rather than being grinded and polished into rounded shape.  They seems to maintain the original shape.

The Beach Sand Collected from the Clear Water beach contains sparkling quartz

The Beach Sand Collected from the Clear Water Beach Contains many different types of Sands

I put them in the homemade polarized light microscope.   The color of the crystal turns into brilliant colors due to the deflection of light by the irregular shape of the sand.  The color pattern is very much like the color of the lace agate’s quartz under the polarized light microscope.

 (The analyzer polarized film is removed)

The above picture was taken with Canon EOS T1i camera in manual mode.  The camera was attached to the microscope with a 0.5 X reduction adapter.

Releated Post:

The beach sand of Gulf Mexico: the beaches on the gulf of mexico are famous for their sparkling water and sugar white sand. On my spring camping trip, I collected some beach sand on several beaches, including Siesta Beach which ranked #1 on Dr. Beach’s top 10 beach in the US.

Sand from Henderson State Park, FL

 

Read Full Post »

Megan has long been a rock collector.  She likes to pick up a rock here and there whenever we go to a park.  The hobby seems to be infectious.  I would pick up a rock or two.  My first trip with Georgia Mineral Society is to collect the lace agate at Summerville, Georgia.   What a perfect location!  The subject for first week of Alan’s social science is the five geographic regions of Georgia.  Summerville is located in the Ridge and Valley region of Georgia (Snellville is located in the Piedmont region).    

The lace agate collection took place at a private quarry just outside of Chattahoochee national forest.  We don’t have any specialize sledge hammer or chisel for rock hounding.  All we have are garden shovels, house hold hammer and garden border chisel but that’s good enough for the site.  We do take the advice of bringing extra bottle of water.  It came in handy when we need to rinse the chalky white chert from the rocks – most rocks here are covered with white dust called chert.  Fortunately, we don’t need much digging tools since most rocks are one the surface.  The quarry has piles and piles of rocks that we can simply pick from the surface.    

Rock collection at Quarry

Most rocks are collected at surface or the rock piles. Only occasional light digging is needed.

 We spends hours washing and brushing the rocks after gone home.  The patterns of the rocks stands out after cleaning.  Here are some macro shots of Summerville Lace Agates with Olympus stylus 7010 snapshot camera in super macro mode.  

The surface of summerville lace agate

The surface of Summerville lace agate

Summerville Lace Agate

Cut the Summerville lace agate vertically. It shows many layers of beautiful lace pattern.

Summerville Lace Agate Mount Cross Cut

Cut session of the mount of Summerville lace agate. It shows concentric circle.

Pattern of Summerville lace agate when the mount was cut in the verticle direction.

Pattern of Summerville lace agate when the mount was cut in the vertical direction.

Pattern of Summerville lace agate - Rib

The pattern of Summerville lace agate looks like a slab of BBQ Rib

The pattern of summerville lace agate shows geometic shapes

The pattern of Summerville lace agate shows geometric shapes

The color of summerville lace agate

Most Summerville lace agate shows the color of brown to yellowish and white. This agate is mostly gray and pale white.

The color of summerville lace agate

Some Summerville lace agate shows up red

Photomicrography* of Summerville Lace Agate  

Summerville Lace Agate Lace Surface

Summerville Lace Agate Lace Surface

The tip of an agate stalagmite was broken to show the circling pattern.

Further deep in to the structure. The concentric circles sometimes show up gray or brown depending on the type of mineral deposits.

A quarter session of the circle shows the details of the direction of the quartz pointing toward and away the center of the circle.

Another photo shows the quarter session of the circle structure. This cross session is more brownish than gray.

Sometime the concentric circle is shown with more distinct lines of brown, white, orange color.

Varieties of lace patterns:   

Summerville Lace Agate Lace Pattern

Summerville Lace Agate - Lace Pattern

Summerville Lace Agate Lace Pattern

Summerville Lace Agate Lace Pattern

Summerville Lace Agate Lace Squared Pattern

Summerville Lace Agate Lace Triangle Pattern

Summerville Lace Agate Lace Triangle Pattern

Found plenty of white geometric shapes in the Summerville lace agate

Summerville Lace Agate Linear Pattern

Summerville Lace Agate Linear Pattern

Occassionally, found some agates with red color.

occasionally, found some agate with red color.

More red colored summerville lace agate

More red colored Summerville lace agate

Some quartz found in the cavity of a summerville lace agate

Some quartz found in the cavity of a Summerville lace agate

Summerville Lace Agate - Quartz

Summerville Lace Agate - Quartz found within the cavity

Quartz found in the agate specimen

Summerville Lace Agates are beautiful rocks.  They are created with unpredictable patterns, geometric shapes and colors.  The quartz on the agates give the rock extra sparks.  The rocks are very pretty even without additional cutting or polishing.  We are going to display some in the original form and polish some with rock tumbler.  That’s will be our next project.  

* Photos are taken with Tucsen 3.0MP CMOS microscope camera from Ample Scientific SM Plus Stereo Microscope.  The color tones of the photomicrograph is somewhat blueish because of the LED illumination while the macro shots with the Olympus Stylus 7010 are using the incandescent lights which results in yellowish color tone.

Read Full Post »