Essay on Good Ole Azurite

Submitted By Baramus
Words: 714
Pages: 3

Good Ole’ Azurite

Oliver Trevisick

Physical Geology Lab 1110L
Section 4

Out of the twenty-four minerals that we have studied over the past weeks, I had one mineral on my mind that I wanted to take a deeper look into, and that is azurite. Just from being around friends with numerous different crystals, minerals, and gemstones I was always attracted azurite and was interested where it comes from. The blue color of it always caught my eye and just seemed so mysterious looking compared to the other minerals. Azurite is formed in a couple different ways and is mined in different places all around the globe, with it being relatively abundant it has made its self useful in certain social and economic situations. The formation of azurite starts out with the oxidation of copper, thus forming the carbonate azurite. When this process happens under different conditions, such as pressure, heat, and occurrence of water, it can change its formation and alter the properties of the mineral. as azurite is underground it will slowly absorb water around it and with time will create small deposits of malachite. Azurite is usually found as a blue cluster with small green pieces of malachite in it, which can differ depending on how long the azurite was exposed to water. Even though azurite is a beautiful mineral it is still a soft mineral at that. With azurite being a soft copper carbonate mineral it registers on the Moh’s hardness scale as a 3.5-4.0, allowing it to be weathered easily. This weathering that occurs has a great affect on the shade of blue that the azurite will have. Azurite has been found in mines all around the world, even here in the United States. It is usually found in copper mines located in Australia, Chile, China, Africa, and some parts of Russia. Along with those foreign copper mines, azurite has been mined out of Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico, and a few mines south of the border in Mexico. The more famous mines are here in the U.S. though, such as mines in La Sal, Utah, Brisbee, Arizona, and Grant Count, New Mexico. These mines here in America are very renowned for the incredible quality of azurite that they produce. With the mines that produce the higher quality of azurite, they are usually closed and privately owned and are now places where you can go and see the mines where these beautiful azurite specimens were mined. One of the first uses of azurite, centuries ago, was pigment for artists, and the older paintings that have been preserved that originally had blue skies now have a strange green shade due to the oxidation of the azurite over time. Besides painting azurite was also used for early make-up applications, such as eye shadow, science has now found other minerals for make-up besides azurite because the azurite would change colors, making the