Today we will learn about How and where Natural Gemstones are formed? This is a very interesting topic about the formation of gemstones. Most of the gemstones form as minerals inside the Earth. Mostly form as crystals in which atoms are arranged in a beautiful symmetry and in orderly manners. Such crystallization is called crystal structure of the crystal system. We have learnt in the previous post about crystal system or structure both lattice shapes and properties. Learning about gemstone formation help in understand or identification of the gemstones. Learning about gemstone formation also help us in finding the gemstones from the rocks.
Though gems and minerals are the same. But gemstones include some other material also apart from inorganic material. Gemstones are both organic and inorganic. They are formed by minerals and organic material both. Usually, there are 5 ways when and where gemstones can be formed. Here, they are:-
Gemstone Formation Process and Locations
1- Igneous Rocks
Igneous rocks appear after molten material cools down inside the Earth cust. Here is where gemstones, minerals get formation. It works like a manufacturing area or a factory. This is the first process for the formation of gemstones.
Sometimes it happens when lava comes out, hydrothermal veins are formed by mineral-rich water which cools down. Emerald is an example. If beryllium element will be enough in that water, it is likely beryl can be formed. In presence of trace elements like vanadium or chromium, Beryl can be converted into emeralds.
In metamorphic rocks, the re-crystallization process occurs due to heat, pressure and extreme temperature. This recrystallization becomes the cause of some new gemstones. Examples are ruby, spinel, garnet and sapphires.
Some gemstones are formed due to water depositing sediments. Rocks are transported with the help of raining or other weather conditions which goes towards lakes or oceans. The constant process and continuous flow of rocks by being caused by weather conditions cause pressure over already existed rocks in the bottom of lakes or ocean. This pressure caused in the formation of new gemstones such as malachite, opal and azurite.
Organic gems are remainings of either fossil, shells of animals or resin material from tree-like Amber. Amber becomes gems when resin from treen comes down and it has flowed through the water to another area or underground. After millions of years, it becomes a bit hard. If any animal or insect is trapped into amber, it also becomes part of amber. Another organic gems example is pearl/shells.
What condition needs for the formation of gemstones?
These are basic requirements or desired condition when crystallization in minerals occur.
At a very high temperature enough for making crystals, minerals are formed. As soon as the temperature becomes low or drops, solid ingredients of minerals also drop in suspension. Such condition cause making of crystals. It is likely to happen that the number of various minerals gets formation in the same solution during up down of temperature. For example, sapphire can be in the first stage, when the temperature becomes low, topaz gets formation and if the temperature drops down more then quartz can take formation. Like, you see in following phot, zircon with black tourmaline on feldespar.