Information on spodumene gemstone

by Manisha G

image of spodumene gemstoneA member of Pyroxene group.

Chemical composition: Silicate of lithium aluminium.

Crystal characteristics: Monoclinic system. Prismatic habit, generally flattered parallel to the prism. Crystals vertically etched and striated, often very deeply, giving the crystal a splintered appearance. Most crystals show some evidence of the two perfect cleavage directions parallel to the prism faces.

Varieties: Pale lilac, violet, Pink-kunzite, Emrald green-hiddenite (very rare). Pale yellow, pale green.

Physical properties:

Cleavage: Perfect, stones should be treated with care, simply dropping a stone is sufficient to develop flaws. Very brittle.

Hardness: 7; S.G.: 3.17 – 3.19; Lustre: vitreous; Refraction: Double, biaxial positive; R.I.: 1.660 – 1.675;

Birefringence: 0.014 – 0.015; Dichroism: strong in both kunzite and hiddenite.

Spectrum: Double at 6860, 6905A° and bands at 4375 and 4330A°.

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