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Click Here For Best Selection Of High Quality Polarizing Microscope

Click Here For Best Selection Of High Quality Polarizing Microscope

The chemical formula of the mineral Brass is indicated by Cu3Zn2 or Copper Zinc. Brass is actually a Native Element. It is actually not yet an officially recognized mineral, but has been proposed as a mineral. Brass was first used in the Near East and then with an extensive use in China and soon after that by the ancient Romans. Since prehistoric times, humans even before the discovery of zinc have likely known Brass. Melting calamine, a zinc ore, together with copper, produced brass. Zinc was extracted from the calamine during this process and mixes with copper. On the other hand, pure zinc is known to be too reactive to have been produced by ancient metalworking techniques. Andreas Sigismund Marggraf (1709-1782), a German scientist. Made the identification of zinc as a metal as ell as the determinations of its properties in the year 1746. In the year 1781, the process of combining zinc and metallic copper to make Brass was patented in England. Brass is synonymous with Laiton and Messing. Brass mineral specimens are known to crystallize in the isometric system. In optical mineralogy, this isometric system comprises crystals having three axes, all of which are perpendicular to one another and all are found equal in lengths.


Natural Brass specimens are considered uncommon and are extremely rare in occurrence, which is actually found in only two types of localities. This brass could have been considered as an official mineral if the naturally occurring crystals may prove to have been unique structure and chemistry from other copper nickel alloys. But this may prove impossible or difficult and if so, Brass will then be discounted as a mineral. Any alloy of copper and zinc is called brass, but the different proportions of zinc and copper can produce a range of brasses, all of which have unique properties. Brass is considered important for its workability and hardness. The specimens of naturally occurring crystals of copper nickel alloy are considered here, and not the man-made brass, which is found having similar formula with the naturally occurring brass. Brass is under the classification as an element despite the fact that it is a compound. Brass minerals are actually alloys with metallic bonds, which are very much the same as the more pure metallic elements. Thus, Brass is classified as an Element in the field of optical mineralogy.


            Mineral specimens of Brass are usually found in shades of yellow to brassy yellow when viewed with the aid of geological polarizing light microscopes. Its color is very similar to that of gold and it is commonly found fascinating when evaluated under polarized microscopes. A variety of Brass color depends on the amount of zinc present in the chemical composition of the mineral. The more zinc content, the lighter is the color of Brass. Brass commonly exhibits a metallic luster  when viewed in reflected light of the petrographic polarizing microscope. Brass has absent cleavage even when it is closely examined under several adjustments on the aperture diaphragm of the polarizing light microscope for mineralogists. When Brass specimen is rubbed on a white porcelain streak plate, it is usually found leaving a brassy brown streak. The specific gravity measure of the man made brass is commonly found ranging from 8.4 grams per cubic centimeters to 8.7 grams per cubic centimeters. Brass is known to be harder than copper. But it is considered slightly weaker and softer than steel. Various shapes can be formed out of this element Brass. It is also considered as a good conductor of heat and is generally resistant to corrosion from salt water.


            Brass mineral crystals are usually found opaque in appearance. Crystal habits of Brass minerals are limited only to tiny grains, which are commonly showing splendid microscope images under polarized light microscopes used in optical mineralogy. Brass is a non-radioactive element. Best field indicators of the Brass mineral commonly include color, rarity, locality and density. Brass minerals notably occur and only limited to two localities namely, some areas in Middle Timan and in Siberia, Russia.

Tuesday, July 29th, 2008 at 7:26 am
The Native Elements Mineral Class
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