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Spodumene

Updated on February 25, 2015

Spodumene

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Spodumene and Meteorites

Spodumene is not a well-known gemstone in most circles. It co-occurs with lithium, lead, beryllium, cassiterite and tantalum.

In areas of ancient meteorite impact sites, these minerals as well as others such as silver, platinum and gold can be found clustering together.

Depending upon the existing sedimentary deposits, meteorites carry rare elements not found in abundance on earth. The unique combination of these elements give birth through time to unique crystal growths and formations, such as maxixe and spodumene.

Spodumene was first mentioned in the year 1800 in Sweden and his name is derived from the Greek word "spodumenos", that means "burnt to ashes", because of the opaque appearance of the material when ignited.

Hiddenite

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Kunzite

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Gemstone

Colors occur in:

  • Purplish;
  • Lilac;
  • Yellowish-green;
  • Yellowish;
  • Emerald-Green (often in a large size).

There are two types used as gem stones.

  1. Hiddenite is the green to yellowish variety.
  2. Kunzite is the lilac-pink-clear variety.

Regardless of the color, the gemstones are dazzling, desirable and are highly collectible; they are also increasing in value which is the game of stones in wealth building.

Deposit Locations all Around the Globe

Country
Province or State
Afghanistan
 
Australia
 
Brazil
 
Madagascar
 
Pakistan
 
Canada
Manitoba, Quebec, Ontario
United States
North Carolina, California,
 
 

Gem Stones

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Hiddenite Gemstone Hunting

Spodumene

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Medical Uses

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Conventional Methods

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Pharmacology and Medical Uses

This in an important source of lithium and it has been recognized for its use in industry, pharmacology, but also medicine.

  • In 1843 it was used in vitro to reduce the weight of a uric acid bladder stone in lithium solution;
  • Later it was used, also in vitro, for gouty uric acid, too;
  • The historical medical use of the mineral was to treat medical health, suggesting there was some level of efficiency;
  • In modern medicine, Lithium-based preparations are used as treatment for bipolar disorder and depression, in orthodox medicine.

Lithium

The current applications for this material are quite vast and useful. As mentioned before, it is mainly used as a source of lithium, which is used in glass and ceramics, battery compounds, lubricants, or flux agent.

Lithium is extracted from the mineral by fusing in acid. So, a generous demand for high purity lithium in the battery industry, to make large quantities of rechargeable batteries for cell phones, tablets, portable music devices and all other electronic portable devices means a high demand for spodumene.

Used in Glass

This is an attractive material and it is used as additive in glass and ceramic industries, due to its excellent properties, such as high chemical resistance, high thermal shock resistance and stable coefficient of expansion.

Ceramic Cookware

Subsequently, it is applied in the pharmaceutical glass prescription. This Lithium containing pharmaceutical glass produced in the laboratory has numerous advantages like: a stable coefficient of expansion, good stretch, thermochemical resistance, water resistance, energy saving.

Also, this material replaced the use of sodium, potassium and boron. and was a cost effective change.

Ceramic cookware for direct flame is another application where the material was successfully applied, due to its properties. Nowadays, ceramic cookware may be produced from aluminum, glass ceramic, borosilicate glass, cordierite and spodumene. The latter two have been effective for ceramic cookware, because they can be fabricated at a reasonable price and also using the conventional methods.

Kunzite

These gems have life in them: their colors speak, say what words fail of.

— George Eliot

Game of Stones

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Other Applications

Other applications of this mineral are to produce foundry, moulding and aluminum alloys, high quality optics, additives for lubricants, cement, metallurgy.

The use of spodumene has also been researched regarding the way it can increase mechanical properties of certain ceramics.

The results have shown that the presence of this additive has reduced the porosity, improved the sintering behavior and improved the formation of mullite ceramics at high temperatures. So, these improved ceramics have both better mechanical and physical properties.

Another possible researched use was for manufacturing porcelain tile bodies of great whiteness. It has been shown that, due to the properties of this particular mineral, it was suitable for achieving the purpose, along with benefits and advantages.

Perfect Cleavage

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Folklore and Mysticism

This gemstone, with its perfect cleavage and collector appeal is thought to be in folklore sources, from a metaphysical point of view.

Today it is considered by mystics to be the crystal of love that connects people to the infinite source of purification.

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All Around the Globe

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Sources:

Websites:

  • Wikimedia Commons (Images)
  • Gemdat.org - Spodumene
  • Gemsociety.org - Spodumene
  • Sandatlas.org -Spodumene

Journals:

  • Canadian Mineralogist Vol. 11" pp. 660-678 (1972) - PETR CERNY AND R. B. FERGUSON Deportment of Earth Sciences, University of Manitoba.
  • International Geology Review - Volume 30, Issue 1, 1988 - THE PHYSICOCHEMICAL CONDITIONS OF FORMATION OF QUARTZ-SPODUMENE AND QUARTZ-MUSCOVITE AGGREGATES IN RARE-METAL GRANITE PEGMATITES



High Demand

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© 2015 Seraph

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