Aragoniteis a naturally occurring bicarbonate mineral that exists in the formof a crystal. The chemical composition of the crystal is CalciumCarbonate with the chemical formula of CaCO3as its primary structure (Simmons &Ahsian, 2007). The mineral is formedthrough physical as well as biological processes such asprecipitation of water. The chemical has mineral calcite as its othername commonly referred to it. The mineral is commonly found in Spainat Molina de Aragón from where it derives its name Aragonite.
Aragoniteoccurs in a variety of colors, however, the common colors are gray,white, reddish white, yellowish white and sometimes appearscolorless. According to Friedman (2015),the mineral has cleavage of 0.10, a density of 2.93, sub-cochoidalfracture and a white streak. Aragonite has a 3.4 to 4.0 hardness,Fluorescent and phosphorescent luminance and vitreous or glassyluster (Friedman, 2015).Even though it is known in the form of a crystal, it differs slightlyfrom the crystal form of the calcites. In addition, the two differ incrystal structure, which can be further examined through opticaltests (Friedman, 2015).Aragonite’s crystals have an orthorhombic system with repeatedtwinning. The crystal has a branching that is referred to as the“flowers of iron” due to the association of the mineral with ironores.
Aragoniteis valuable in its use in the preparation of aquariums. The mineralis used to create the replication of a reef in the aquarium.According to Simmons and Ahsian (2007),the use is because of its crystal structure that looks to resemblecoral reefs. In addition, Aragonite is used to maintain the water pHfor aquariums to those of the practical sea life (Simmons& Ahsian, 2007). Moreover, Aragoniteis used to eliminate cobalt, lead and zinc from water during waterpurification processes.
Friedman,H. (2015). TheMineral Aragonite.Minerals.net, RetrievedFrom, <http://www.minerals.net/mineral/aragonite.aspx>February, 22, 2015
Simmons,R. & Ahsian, N. (2007). TheBook of Stones: Who They are & what They Teach.Berkeley: North Atlantic Books