Spodumene – Day 14 of the Mineral Advent Calendar

This holiday season, why not get a mineral every day instead of chocolate? Today’s mineral is Spodumene find out more about it below..

So you spent the weekend searching the shops for that perfect gift, or wrapping and decorating presents to go under the tree. But there is one thing that you should not forget to buy before the big day and that is batteries. There is NOTHING more frustrating than getting an awesome toy or gadget as a gift and not being able to play with it RIGHT AWAY! So whether you are buying for yourself or a loved one, adult or child, make sure you are all stocked up on batteries!

Uh oh - looks like I'm running low on batteries!!

Uh oh – looks like I’m running low on batteries!!

But in order to make those essential items function you need lithium – you probably knew that already, as many battery manufacturers make a big deal about their lithium batteries and how long they last, but you probably didn’t know that you get lithium from a beautiful mineral called Spodumene. Spodumene comes in several different colours and when gem quality is often given other names, like Kunzite. This often happens to some minerals to make it seem like there is more diversity than there actually is, so beware of new exciting names for gemstones – some of them are even made up by the retailers!!

This is a lovely pinkish coloured crystal of Spodumene and if gem quality, could be called Kunzite as well. Image is from Wikipedia.

This is a lovely pinkish coloured crystal of Spodumene and, if gem quality, could be called Kunzite as well. Image is from Wikipedia.

Spodumene:
Chemical formula: LiAlSi2O6
Colour: Colourless, yellow, light green, emerald-green, pink to violet, purple, white, gray
System: Monoclinic
Hardness (Mohs): 6½ – 7
Can you find it in the UK? Yes

The location of Spodumene mineral in the UK according to the MinDat Website.

The location of Spodumene mineral in the UK according to the MinDat Website.

You can find Spodumene in the UK, but it is pretty rare, in fact only one location (in Devon) is registered on the MinDat website. If you know of any others, as always, please let me know in the comments!

For more information about Spodumene please visit the MinDat website.

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