To go back to GWBN Homepage, click here
To go back to the Teamforce Homepage, click here


inorganic- has not risen from materials that were once a living thing

crystal- has flat sides, called faces, that meet at sharp edges or corners

element- a substance composed of a single kind of atom

compound- two or more compounds are chemically merged so that the elements lose their once distinct properties

Mohs hardness scale- a scale, created by Fredrick Mohs, that ranks minerals by hardness on a scale of ten

streak- the color of a mineral's powder

cleavage- a mineral's ability to split against flat surfaces

fracture- the way a mineral looks when it splits apart in an unusual way

fluorescence- the mineral's ability to glow under ultra- violet light, or black light

Chapter Outline


Properties of Minerals

  • 3,000 known minerals
      • only 100 are common
    • twenty minerals form Earth's crust
      • minerals called "rock forming minerals"
    • Mineral=
      • naturally occurring

        • not made by people
        • inorganic

        • not arisen from once- living thing
      • solid

        • keeps shape, particles packed tightly
      • crystal structure

        • crystals grown in repeating pattern
      • definite chemical composition
        • has certain elements + definite proportions
        • almost all minerals are compounds
        • some elements occur pure form
          • copper
          • gold
          • silver
  • Identifying Minerals

    • Each mineral has it's own specific properties that can be used to identify it.
      • Hardness

        • Mohs hardness scale
          • scale of ten, ten= hardest
          • mineral scratch any softer mineral
      • Color

        • used only with certain minerals
      • Streak

        • color of the powder
        • streak color= different from outside color
      • Luster

        • how a mineral reflects light
        • terms= waxy, earthy, pearly Density
** mass divided by volume= density
      • Crystal Systems

        • crystal systems= crystals classified into shape
          • systems= cubic, hexagonal, tetragonal, orthorhombic, monoclinic, triclinic
      • Cleavage

        • a minerals ability to split along flat surfaces= cleavage
          • minerals cleavage= how atoms on crystals are arranged
        • fracture= how a mineral looks when breaks apart irregularly
      • Special Properties

        • minerals that glow in ultraviolet light (black light)= fluorescence
        • some minerals= magnetized
        • some minerals radioactive
        • some minerals react chemically towards acid