Pikes Peak Pebble Pups

Pikes Peak Pebble Pups

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

A Pale Blue Celestine Mineral from Madagascar

By Nate Blume

A Mineral Haiku

Lustrous crystals shine
Shimmering in stunning blue
They are beautiful

Facts on File:
Formula: SrSO4   (Strontium Sulfate)
Specific gravity: 3.96 – 3.98 g/cm3
Crystal system: Orthorhombic
Group: Barite group
Color: Colorless to shades of blue, white, red, green and brown
Luster: Vitreous, pearly
Streak: white
Mohs hardness: scale: 3-3.5
Fracture: Irregular/uneven

Figure 1. Blue crystals of celestine in a geode.
This specimen measures 1.875” x 0.875” (23 mm x 19 mm).
Image © by Nate Bloom,  A Nate Bloom specimen.

Notes:  Celestine was discovered in 1791.  The name celestine is based on the word “celestial” and refers to the beautiful blue colors of some celestine minerals that look like the sky. I got this specimen from an old mineral collection from the 1960s.  The blue coloring is caused by irradiation of impurities of gold in the crystal. Celestine is often found in sedimentary rocks like limestone and hydrothermal veins.

Author Bio:
Nate Blume is 10 years old and attend 5th grade at the Rocky Mountain Classical Academy in Colorado Springs. He is a member of the Pikes Peak Pebble Pups and the Colorado Springs Mineralogical Society.
Colorado Springs, CO. The Pikes Peak Pebble Pups have a unit in Teller County that meets in Lake George. The other unit meets in Colorado Springs

Figure 2. Author Nate Blume is active in the study of 
Earth sciences in the Pikes Peak region.
Smithsonian Handbooks: Rocks and Minerals by Chris Pellant
Firefly Guide to Minerals Rocks & Fossils by A.C. Bishop, A.R. Woolley and W.R. Hamilton
web sources:  http//www.mineral.net

Welcome! This is the gateway to adventure and discovery

Through this blog pebble pups and junior members of the Colorado Springs Mineralogical Society can access their lessons, work on assignments and projects, and receive details about field trips in the Pikes Peak Region. This Internet program is also suitable for young people who are interested in Earth science but do not live near a rock club or gem and mineral society or for young people anywhere who want a deeper dive into these topics. The only requirement is that all participants must be members of the Colorado Springs Mineralogical Society and must fill out the CSMS membership form (under important websites) and send their registration and membership fee in. Steven Veatch is the senior instructor and will need an email from you with your name, address, phone number, and permission from your parents to participate in this program.