Collecting fluorescent minerals
Collecting fluorescent minerals
As in some other collecting hobbies there are mineral collectors who specialize in one area of collecting.Fluorescent mineral collecting is a special field of mineral collecting.Fluorescent minerals will glow when they are exposed to SW or Shortwave,MW or medium wave,LW or Longwave ultravoilet light.Some minerals will glow in all waves others in two.Some will glow one color in SW and another color in LW.The notable areas where fluorescent minerals are found are Franklin&Ogdensburg New Jersey,Mont Saint Hilaire,Canada and Greenland.I must say that fluorescent minerals can be found in almost if not every state of the USA and probably in every country.
The most important tool for field collecting is the mineral lamp.Most of the fluorescent minerals only respond to SW UV light.So you need to have a SW mineral lamp to use for field collecting.There are minerals which will react to LW UV but the number is much smaller then those which are SW reactive.There are a good number of lamps being made today for field collecting and for displaying fluorescent minerals.There are small battery operated models which can cost anywhere from 10 dollars to 60 dollars.There are large lamps for displaying fluorescent minerals which can cost up to 1000 dollars each.My favorite lamp is a portable 12 volt DC lamp which has both SW and LW operating lights.It is great for field collecting and cost about 240 dollars.
Anywhere that people collect minerals is a good place try collecting fluorescent minerals.You can collect in the day light hours if you bring a piece of black plastic or a tarp to cover the rocks with.Night time collecting is easier as you can cover more ground without having to drag along a tarp to create a dark space.
I have found some great fluorescent minerals locally at a roadcut on a main US Rt which was made wider by blasting away rock.I brought my UV lamp to check out the area and found some of the brightest fluorescent minerals I have ever found.On another collecting trip I took my lamp along to check out the rocks in an area I had collected in before.Again my reward was some beautiful fluorescent minerals in red and blues and yellow.So exploring old sites and new sites can payoff and add to your collection.
Sometimes you can check rocks and minerals that you already have and find that they are fluorescent.I have discovered that Herkimer Diamonds are sometimes fluorescent blue in SW UV light!
Franklin and Ogdensburg New Jersey are known as the FLUORESCENT MINERAL CAPITAL of the world.There is a collecting area at the Franklin Mineral Museum and also one at Sterling Hill Mine in Ogdensburg.Both are fee collectng sites and have a great number of minerals to collect.
Franklin Ogdensburg District
Sterling Hill Mine
New Jersey Zinc Mines
A good place to visit for learning and for collecting is the Franklin/Ogdensburg area in New Jersey.Franklin and Ogdensburg both had zinc mines.Now both Franklin and Ogdensburg have Mineral/miining museums and there are collecting areas at both museums.
Fluorescent Mineral Society
- Mineralogy Database - Mineral Collecting, Localities, Mineral Photos and Data
The web's most comprehensive and regularly updated mineralogy database with information on minerals from around the world and thousands of photos