The topics covered in this chapter can be summarized as follows:

Section Summary
3.1 Silicate Minerals Silicate minerals are, by far, the most important minerals in Earth’s crust. They all include silica tetrahedra (four oxygens surrounding a single silicon atom) arranged in different structures (chains, sheets, etc.). Some silicate minerals include iron or magnesium and are called ferromagnesian silicates.
Lab 3 Exercises The best way to learn mineral identification is to practice by examining the mineral samples in your Mineral Kit 1 and 2. It is important to know all the properties of each mineral in your kits, but especially the diagnostic properties that are most helpful for identifying each mineral. Remember, different samples of the same mineral may not always look exactly the same, but their other physical properties (e.g, hardness, cleavage, lustre) will be consistent.


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A Practical Guide to Introductory Geology Copyright © 2020 by Siobhan McGoldrick is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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