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Introduction to Mineralogy

Third Edition

William D. Nesse

Publication Date - 14 December 2016

ISBN: 9780190618353

512 pages
8-1/2 x 11 inches

In Stock


Introduction to Mineralogy, Third Edition, consolidates much of the material now covered in traditional mineralogy and optical mineralogy courses and focuses on describing minerals within their geologic context. Presenting the important traditional content of mineralogy--including crystallography, chemical bonding, controls on mineral structure, mineral stability, and crystal growth--it provides students with a foundation for understanding the nature and occurrence of minerals.


Describes in detail physical, optical, and X-ray powder diffraction techniques of mineral study

Outlines common chemical analytical methods

Provides thorough descriptions of more than 100 common minerals, emphasizing the geologic contexts within which they occur

Includes tables and diagrams that help students identify minerals using both physical and optical properties

Incorporates numerous line drawings, photographs, and photomicrographs that elucidate complex concepts

Introduction to Mineralogy can be packaged with Daniel Schulze's An Atlas of Minerals in Thin Section for use in your course for a nominal additional fee.

New to this Edition

  • Substantial updates and revisions to the coverage of chemical bonding, partings, causes of mineral color, electron microprobe analysis, the scanning electron microscope, and microcrystalline varieties of silica
  • A new section on carbonaceous material
  • More emphasis on the use of a hand lens in mineral identification

About the Author(s)

William D. Nesse is Professor Emeritus of Geology at the Department of Earth Sciences at the University of Northern Colorado.

Previous Publication Date(s)

August 2011
October 1999


"Introduction to Mineralogy, Third Edition, combines incredibly helpful optical data on minerals with the classic information of a mineralogy textbook. Nesse has done a masterful job creating what I think is hands down the best reference for optical characteristics. I view this book as a text for my students and as a future reference for them in their work as geologists."--Dori Farthing, State University of New York at Geneseo

"The major concepts are covered well and the additional details provide an extended challenge for those students who are particularly interested or have the right background to truly grasp the more complex concepts. This is really one of the best textbooks I have used for any of the courses I have taught."--Rachel L. Walters, University of Florida

Table of Contents

    Each chapter opens with an Introduction and ends with References Cited and Suggestions for Additional Reading.
    Chapter 1. Introduction

    Mineral Nomenclature
    General References on Mineralogy
    Minerals and Society
    --Natural Resources
    --Minerals and Health
    Getting Started
    Box 1.1 Getting Started: Mineral Physical Properties
    Chapter 2. Crystallography
    Translational Symmetry: Two Dimensions
    Plane Lattices
    Translational Symmetry: Three Dimensions
    --Space Lattices and Unit Cell
    --Bravais Lattices and Crystal Systems
    Point Symmetry
    --Compound Symmetry Operations
    --Symmetry Notation
    The 32 Point Groups
    --Steno's Law
    --Measurement of Crystal Angles
    --Determining Crystal System and Crystal Class
    Space Groups
    Box 2.1 Quasicrystals
    Crystal Faces
    --Laws of Haüy and Bravais
    --Miller Indices
    --Indices and Crystal Axes in the Hexagonal Crystal System
    --Determining Miller Index
    -- Crystallographic Planes
    --Assigning Miller Indexes by Inspection
    Crystallographic Directions
    Crystal Forms
    --Isometric Forms
    --Non-isometric Forms
    --Combining Crystal Forms
    --Enantiomorphous Forms and Crystals
    --Positive and Negative Forms
    Forms in the Six Crystal Systems
    --Triclinic Crystal System
    --Monoclinic Crystal System
    --Orthorhombic Crystal System
    --Tetragonal Crystal System
    --Hexagonal Crystal System
    --Isometric Crystal System
    Crystal Habit
    Chapter 3. Crystal Chemistry
    The Nature of Chemical Elements
    --Formation of Ions
    Abundance of the Elements
    Chemical Bonding
    --Valence-Related Bonding
    --Relation among Valence-Dependent Bondings
    Conductors, Insulators, and Semiconductors
    --Bonds Involving Asymmetric Charge Distribution
    Size of Atoms and Ions
    --Oxidation State
    Chapter 4. Crystal Structure
    Illustrating Mineral Structures
    Controls of Crystal Structure
    --Structure Controls with Metallic Bonding
    --Structure Controls with Covalent Bonding
    --Structure Controls with Ionic Bonding
    --Application of Pauling's Rules
    Structure Controls with Molecular Crystals
    Isostructural Minerals
    --Reconstructive Polymorphism
    --Displacive Polymorphism
    --Order-Disorder Polymorphism
    Mineral Classification
    Compositional Variation in Minerals
    --Substitutional Solid Solution
    --Omission Substitution Solution
    --Intersitial Substitution
    Mineral Formulas
    Graphical Representation
    --Binary diagrams
    --Ternary diagrams
    Chapter 5. Mineral Growth
    --Mineral Stability
    --Gibbs Free Energy
    --Mineral Reactions
    Phase Diagrams
    --Single-Component Systems
    --Binary Systems
    Mineral Nucleation
    --Homogeneous Nucleation
    --Heterogeneous Nucleation
    Crystal Growth
    --Rate of Growth
    --Zoned Crystals
    Structural Defects
    --Point Defects
    --Line Defects
    --Planar Defects
    --Growth Twinning
    --Transformation Twinning
    --Deformation Twinning
    Post-crystallization Processes
    --Radioactivity and Minerals
    Mineral Evolution
    --Biologically Induced Mineralization
    --Biologically Controlled Mineralization
    PART II: Mineral Properties, Study, and Identification
    Chapter 6. Physical Properties of Minerals
    Mass Dependent Properties
    --Specific Gravity
    Properties Related to Mechanical Cohesion
    Color and Luster
    --Perception of Color
    --Mineral Luster
    --Mineral Color
    --Color from Mechanical Causes
    --Consistency of Mineral Color
    Electrical Properties
    --Electrical Conductivity
    Miscellaneous Properties
    Chapter 7. Optical Mineralogy
    --Light Waves
    --Polarized Light
    Interaction of Light and Matter
    --Optically Isotropic vs. Anisotropic Materials
    --Reflection and Refraction
    Petrographic Microscope
    --Substage Assembly
    --Microscope Stage
    --Objective Lenses
    --Upper Polarizer
    --Bertrand Lens
    --Focusing Mechanism
    --Direction Conventions
    Isotropic Materials
    Anisotropic Minerals
    --Interference Phenomena
    --Use of the Interference Color Chart
    --Function of Accessory Plates
    Optical Indicatrix
    --Isotropic Indicatrix
    --Uniaxial Indicatrix
    --Biaxial Indicatrix
    Mineral Color & Pleochroism
    --Isotropic Minerals
    --Uniaxial Minerals
    --Biaxial Minerals
    Extinction Angle and Sign of Elongation
    --Extinction Angle
    --Sign of Elongation
    --Categories of Extinction
    --Extinction in Uniaxial Minerals
    --Extinction in Biaxial Minerals
    Interference Figures
    --Uniaxial Interference Figures
    --Biaxial Interference Figure
    Refractometry: Measurement of Index of Refraction
    --Immersion Method
    --Refractometry in Thin Section
    --Isotropic Minerals
    --Uniaxial Minerals
    --Biaxial Minerals
    Reflected-Light Optics
    --Observation in Plane-Polarized Light
    --Observations with Crossed Polarizers
    --Internal Reflections
    Tactics for Mineral Identification
    --Thin Section Identification
    --Grain Mount Identification
    --Polished Section Identification
    Chapter 8. Introduction to X-ray Crystallography
    --X-ray Generation
    --X-ray Detection
    X-ray Diffraction
    Powder Method
    --Sample Preparation
    --Instrumental Output
    --Data Reduction
    --Powder Diffraction File
    --Bragg Reflection Indices
    --Mineral Identification
    --Mixed Samples
    --Estimation of Relative Mineral Abundance
    --Estimation of Composition
    Determining Unit Cell Parameters
    Chapter 9. Chemical Analysis of Minerals
    Analytical Methods
    --Wet Chemical
    --Electron Probe Microanalysis
    --Scanning Electron Microscopy
    --X-ray Fluorescence
    --Mass Spectrometry
    --Conventions in Reporting Chemical Analyses
    Conversion of Chemical Analyses to Structural Formulas
    Chapter 10. Strategies for Study
    Presentation of Mineral Data
    Mineral Identification Tactics
    --Hand-Sample Identification
    --Thin Section Identification
    --Grain Mount Identification
    --Polished Section Identification
    --Electron Microprobe
    --Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM)
    --X-ray Diffraction
    Mineral Separation
    Mineral Association
    Problems in Paradise
    Section III: Mineral Descriptions
    Chapter 11. Silicates
    Silicate Structure and Classification
    Silicate Chemical Formula
    Mafic vs. Felsic
    Igneous Rocks
    --Magmatic Processes
    --Igneous Environments
    Terrigenous Sedimentary Rocks
    --Sedimentary Processes
    --Sedimentary Environments
    Metamorphic Rocks
    --Metamorphic Variables
    --Metamorphic Processes
    --Metamorphic Grade, Facies, Mineral Zone Boundaries and Isograds
    --Major Compositional Groups of Metamorphic Rocks
    --Metamorphic Environments
    Chapter 12. Framework Silicates
    Silica Group
    Box 12.1 Micro- and Non-Crystalline Silica
    Feldspar Group
    --Al/Si Order/-Disorder
    --Exsolution in the Feldspars
    --Other Feldspar Intergrowths
    Alkali Feldspar
    --Distinguishing Features in Hand Sample
    Zeolite Group
    Other Framework Silicates
    Chapter 13. Sheet Silicates
    Structure and Classification
    --1:1 Layer Silicates
    --2:1 Layer Silicates
    TO Structures (1:1)
    --Serpentine (Antigorite, Chrysotile, Lizardite)
    TOT Structures (2:1)
    TOT + c Structures: Mica Minerals (2:1)
    TOT + c Structures: Brittle Micas (2:1)
    TOT + O Structure
    Clay Minerals
    --Structure and Classification
    --Geology of Clay
    --Clay in the Environment
    Other Sheet Silicates
    Chapter 14. Chain Silicates
    Pyroxene Group
    --Structure and Classification
    --Geology of Pyroxenes
    --Calcic Clinopyroxene
    --Aegirine, Aegirine-Augite
    Pyroxenoid Group
    Amphibole Group
    --Structure and Classification
    --Geology of Amphiboles
    --Other Amphiboles
    Chapter 15. Disilicates and Ring Silicates
    --Structure and Classification
    Ring Silicates
    --Structure & Classification
    Chapter 16. Orthosilicates
    --Olivine Group
    --Garnet Group
    Aluminum Silicates
    Chapter 17. Carbonates, Sulfates, Phosphates, Borates, Tungstates, and Molybdates
    Structure and Classification
    Rhombohedral Carbonates (Calcite and Dolomite Groups)
    Box 17.1 Limestone and Dolostone
    Aragonite Group
    OH-Bearing Carbonates
    Box 17.2 Evaporites
    Tungstates and Molybdates
    Chapter 18. Oxides, Hydroxides, and Halides
    X2O Group
    Box 18.1 Paleoclimate
    XO Group
    XY2O4 Minerals
    --Spinel Group
    Box 18.2 Sedimentary Iron Formations
    --Spinel Series
    X2O3 Group
    XO2 Group
    --Iron Hydroxide Minerals
    --Aluminum Hydroxide Minerals
    --Manganese Oxide and Hydroxide Minerals
    Chapter 19. Sulfides and Related Minerals
    Crystal Chemistry and Classification
    Sulfide Paragenesis
    --Hydrothermal Deposits
    --Supergene Processes
    Sulfide Minerals
    Chapter 20. Native Elements
    Box 20.1 Graphitic Carbon
    Appendix A. Effective Ionic Radii of the Elements
    Appendix B. Determinative Tables
    Table B.1. Non-Metallic Minerals with White, Gray, or Other Pale-Colored Streak
    Table B.2. Non-Metallic Minerals with Distinctly Colored Streak
    Table B.3. Minerals with Metallic and Submetallic Luster
    Table B.4. Specific Gravity
    Table B.5. Minerals That May Fluoresce
    Table B.6. Selected Minerals That Are Ferromagnetic and Ferrimagnetic
    Table B.7. Minerals That Effervesce in Dilute HCl
    Table B.8. Color of Minerals in Thin Section and Grain Mount
    Table B9. Indices of Refraction of Isotropic Minerals
    Table B.10. Indices of Refraction of Uniaxial Minerals
    Table B.11. Indices of Refraction of Biaxial Negative Minerals in Order of Increasing n6
    Table B.12. Indices of Refraction of Biaxial Positive Minerals Arranged in Order of Increasing n6
    Table B.13. Minerals That Produce Pleochroic Halos in Surrounding Minerals
    Table B.14. Colors Exhibited by Opaque Minerals That Display Internal Reflections with Reflected Light
    Appendix C. Mineral Associations
    Table C1. Mineralogy of Common Igneous Rocks
    Table C2. Mineralogy of Sedimentary Rocks
    Table C3. Mineralogy of Common Metamorphic Rocks
    Table C4. Mineralogy of Hydrothermal Sulfide Deposits
    Mineral Index
    Subject Index

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