Earth Grows Fine Gemstones in Minutes

Original article found in SciTechDaily, click here.

Crystals Could Grow Up to 3 Feet per Day in Some Cooling Magmas

By Rice University

Rome wasn’t built in a day, but some of Earth’s finest gemstones were, according to new research from Rice University.

Aquamarine, emerald, garnet, zircon and topaz are but a few of the crystalline minerals found mostly in pegmatites, veinlike formations that commonly contain both large crystals and hard-to-find elements like tantalum and niobium. Another common find is lithium, a vital component of electric car batteries.

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Top Image: SciTechDaily © Courtesy: Brazilian emeralds in a quartz-pegmatite matrix. Credit: Madereugeneandrew/Wikimedia Commons)