Introduction of Minerals
Minerals: A mineral is a naturally occuring, homogenous element or inorganic compound that has
a definite chemical composition and a characteristic geometric form. The minerals can be identified
by many of their physical properties like colour, lustre, streak, hardness etc. (Introduction of Minerals)
· Lustre – general appearance of mineral in reflected light.
· Fracture – property of the mineral to break along an irregular surface i.e., surface produced
when the mineral breaks in direction other than cleavage plane.
· Streak – The colour of the powder of the mineral that is obtained by rubbing the mineral
against the unglazed porcelain plate.
Soil forming minerals mainly belong to the group of alumino – silicates. Minerals are classified
based on quantity (essential and accessory), origin (primary and secondary), specific gravity
( light and heavy) and chemical composition (native elements, oxides, sulphates, sulphides,
carbonates, halides, silicates).
Primary minerals –They are the original components of the rock, which have not been
altered chemically. They are formed from crystallization of magma (molten mass).
Eg: Quartz, feldspar etc.
Secondary minerals –are resulted from the decomposition and / or alteration of primary
minerals. These are formed due to subsequent changes in the rocks.
Eg: All clay minerals like kaolinite, illite except micas. Micas are primary minerals.
Minerals which form the chief constituent of rock and regraded as the characteristic
components of the rock are known as “Essential Minerals”. Eg: Quartz and feldspars.
Accessory minerals : The minerals which occur in small quantity in rocks They are not
concerned for naming or the nomenclature of the rocks. Such minerals are called as
“accessory minerals”. Eg: Apatite, pyrite, magnetite etc. These are not required for the
fomration of any rock. Introduction of Minerals
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