What is Tourmaline?

Articles Gems Minerals Rocks Tourmaline

Tourmaline gemstone is form of crystal called “ Boron Silicate” or “ Crystalline Boron Silicate mineral” It is composition of various elements such as aluminum, iron, magnesium, sodium, lithium, or potassium. Tourmaline has variety of colours and leveled as semi-precious gemstone. Usually Tourmaline hardly matches colour to other tourmaline. They are all time different from each others in colour variety. Tourmaline is also called “ Magic stone” and people had been wearing it to protest themselves.


Tourmaline is the name of a large group of boron silicate, it shares a common crystal structure and same physical and chemical properties .But extremely in chemical structure. The extensive range of arrangements along with hint basics and color middles causes tourmaline to occur in more colors and color combinations than any other mineral group.

People like tourmaline a lot and one can see tourmaline in jewelry stores also very easily. Some tourmaline crystals are obtained by mineral collectors and they keep in their collections because of their unique colours and crystal properties. Tourmaline Crystal specimens which has aesthetic shapes, attractive colours and mineral habit can be sold in many thousand dollars even.


Normally Tourmaline is occurred in an accessory mineral in igneous and metamorphic rocks. Their size of the crystals is usually in millimeter size dispersed through granite, pegmatite and gneiss.  By this way, they hardly and rarely take form of small amount of rock’s volume.

Tourmaline contains interesting properties. Tourmaline colours look different from different angles if viewed in different sides. This is because of Plechroism. When one sees in their vertical axis, they look darker in colour than if seen through their horizontal axis such as green and blue. Some tourmaline appears to have cat’s eye effect.

Tourmaline is both pyroelectic and piezoelectric. Once, it is put under pressure or temperature change, it will give an electrical charge. During this, dust particles become attached to the crystal ends.


Tourmaline are mostly found in world including

  1. Afghanistan
  2. Pakistan
  3. Zimbabwe,
  4. Tanzania,
  5. Usa,Siberia,
  6. Kenya,
  7. Nigeria,
  8. Mozambique,
  9. Brazil,
  10. Africa,
  11. Madagascar,
  12. Siberia,
  13. Australia
  14. and many more.


Tourmaline is found in different kinds such as:

  1. Indicolite tourmaline
  2. Black tourmaline
  3. Pink tourmaline
  4. Rubillite tourmaline
  5. Green tourmaline
  6. watermelon tourmaline
  7. Dravite
  8. Tourmalated quartz
  9. Bicolour
  10. Praiba Tourmaline

Physical Properties of tourmaline:

Physical properties of tourmaline
Chemical Classification Boron silicate
Color black. Blue, green, yellow, pink, red, orange, purple, brown .
Streak White when softer than the streak plate. Colorless when harder than the streak dish.
Luster Glassy
Diaphaneity Translucent to luminous to nearly milky
Cleavage Unclear
Hardness 6 to 7.4
Specific Gravity 2.7 to 3.4
Diagnostic Properties Absence of noticeable cleavage, prismatic crystals with curved triangular cross sections that are often striated, vibrant colors
Organic Arrangement (Ca,Na,K,[]) (Li,Mg,Fe+2,Fe+3,Mn+2,Al,Cr+3,V+3)3(Mg,Al,Fe+3,V+3,Cr+3)6 ((Si,Al,B)6O18) (BO3)3(OH,O)3 (OH,F,O)
Mineral Structure Hexagonal
Uses A popular gemstone and mineral specimen




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