Types of Minerals

I MA N Minerals are classified based on their chemical properties and characteristics.

Real-World Reading Link Everything on Earth is classified into various categories. Food, animals, and music are all classified according to certain properties or features. Minerals are no different; they, too, are classified into groups.

Mineral Groups

You have learned that elements combine in many different ways and proportions. One result is the thousands of different minerals present on Earth. In order to study these minerals and understand their properties, geologists have classified them into groups. Each group has a distinct chemical nature and specific characteristics.

Silicates Oxygen is the most abundant element in Earth's crust, followed by silicon. Minerals that contain silicon and oxygen, and usually one or more other elements, are known as silicates. Silicates make up approximately 96 percent of the minerals present in Earth's crust. The two most common minerals, feldspar and quartz, are silicates. The basic building block of the silicates is the silica tetrahedron, shown in Figure 4.12. A tetrahedron (plural, tetrahedra) is a three-dimensional shape that resembles a pyramid. Recall from Chapter 3 that the electrons in the outermost energy level of an atom are called valence electrons. The number of valence electrons determines the type and number of chemical bonds an atom will form. Because silicon atoms have four valence electrons, silicon has the ability to bond with four oxygen atoms. As shown in Figure 4.13, silica tetrahedra can share oxygen atoms. This structure allows tetrahedra to combine in a number of ways, which accounts for the large diversity of structures and properties of silicate minerals.

Figure 4.12 The silicate polyatomic ion SiO4-2 forms a tetrahedron in which a central silicon atom is cova-lently bonded to oxygen ions Specify How many atoms are in one tetrahedron?

Ball-and-Stick Model

Space-Filling View

Ball-and-Stick Model

Space-Filling View

Stik And Space Filling Models


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Renewable Energy 101

Renewable Energy 101

Renewable energy is energy that is generated from sunlight, rain, tides, geothermal heat and wind. These sources are naturally and constantly replenished, which is why they are deemed as renewable. The usage of renewable energy sources is very important when considering the sustainability of the existing energy usage of the world. While there is currently an abundance of non-renewable energy sources, such as nuclear fuels, these energy sources are depleting. In addition to being a non-renewable supply, the non-renewable energy sources release emissions into the air, which has an adverse effect on the environment.

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  • togo
    How Minerals are classified into groups?
    8 years ago
  • swen kr
    What accounts for the large diversity of silicates?
    8 years ago
  • james
    What mineral groups combine in many different ways and proportions.?
    5 years ago

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