Mineral Characteristic
By Eun Sang & Samuya
Quartz.jpg
Quartz
In mineral characteristics, minerals are formed by natural process, they are inorganic, solid with a definite chemical composition and orderly arrangement of atoms.

First of all minerals are formed by natural process
Grainite.jpg
Granite
which means that minerals made in laboratory is not considered as a mineral cause it is not naturally made.

Secondly all minerals are inorganic.It means that all minerals are not alive and they were never alive. For example oil is not considered as a mineral because they are made from dead animals. So it was once alive. But for it to be a mineral, it should have been never alive.

Third, every mineral is an element or a compound with a definite chemical composition. For example quartz (silicon dioxide) is written as SiO2 becase element silicon and oxygen are it's only constituents.

Fourth, minerals are crystalline solids. All of the solids have a definite volume and shape. Gases and Liquids are not minerals because they do not have a definite shape and a they are not crystalline. Only a solid could be a mineral but not all solid could be an mineral.



Atom_Pattern_in_a_Mineral.png
Atom Pattern in a mineral
Atom Pattern
Atom_Pattern.gif
Atom Pattern

Crystalline means atoms are arranged in a pattern that repeated over and over again. For example, granite's atoms are arranged in layers. Opal is not a mineral when the strictest sense because the atoms are not arranged in a definite repeating pattern even though it occurs naturally and it is an inorganic solid.



CrystalsOnly some minerals crystals have a smooth surface and a regular shapes like quartz. For example a rose quartz, has atoms which are arranged in repeating patterns but we can't see the crystal shape outside of the mineral. The reason is because the rose quartz crystals developed an freely opened space.Crystals are formed by many ways. One way is from the magma and the other way is from solutions.
Crystals from magma are formed by natural processes and forms in many ways. As magma cools down, the atoms looses heat energy and moves closer together and begins to combine into compounds. During the process, atoms at different compounds arrange themselves into orderly and repeating patterns. The amount of element present in the magma would partly determine which mineral to form. When magma cools very slowly, crystals that forms generally large enough to see with unaided eye. But when magma cools rapidly, you cannot see the crystals because when it cools fast, the crystals that form would be very small.
Crystals can also form from mineral dissoved in water. When water evaporates in dry climate, icons left beind could came together and form crystals such as halite crystals. But if too much substance is dissolved in water, icons come together and crystals of the substance can begin forming a solution. Minerals could also form from a so lution without the need of evaporation.

labradorite.jpg
Labradorite

Rose_quartz.JPG
Rose Quartz

salt_crystal.jpg
Crystals that form in salt

Halite_crystals.jpg
Halite Crystal





Work Cited Books:
Earth Science Text Book

Information Source:
http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_are_5_characteristics_of_minerals
http://www.answers.com/topic/mineral
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mineral
http://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minerals
http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/mineral
http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20091101161247AA3BwMn

Images Source

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/ab/USDA_Mineral_Quartz_Crystal_93c3951.jpg
http://www.blurtit.com/var/question/q/q2/q23/q236/q2369/q236976_215928_granite.jpg
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/24/Wurtzite-unit-cell-3D-balls.png
http://www.delminsociety.net/motm/images/images_mar2007/CaF2_atom.gif
http://ricgems.com/yahoo_site_admin/assets/images/WS_rose_quartz_2.137225118.JPG
http://z.about.com/d/chemistry/1/0/3/7/1/nasa-salt-crystals.jpg
http://www.galleries.com/minerals/silicate/labrador/labrador.jpg
http://www.galleries.com/Minerals/Silicate/ZOISITE/zoisite.jpg

Links

Minerals(top) goes to Mineral ID
Solution (bottom) goes to Mineral Formation