Glossary of Minerals and Elements

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What is a mineral?
A naturally occurring, inorganic solid with a distinct internal structure and chemical composition.
Define luster.
The physical property of a mineral that describes how light is relected from its surface; is defined as either metallic or nonmetallic.
What is cleavage?
The physical property of a mineral that causes it to break along smooth, flat surfaces. Cleavage is determined by the arrangement of the mineral's atoms.
What is streak?
Streak is the color of the mineral when it is broken up and powdered.
Define metallic.
Shiny appearance resembling metal.
What is a measure of how easily a mineral can be scratched?
It's hardness.
What are minerals containing silicon and oxygen, usually with other elements called? They are the largest group of minerals.
How many known minerals are there?
What do minerals that break with rough or jagged edges have?
What is a gem?
A valuable mineral highly prized because it is rare and beautiful.
What is ore?
A mineral containing a useful substance, such as a metal, that can be mined for profit.
What is a crystal?
A solid in which the atoms are arranged in repeating patterns.
What five conditions must a substance meet to be a mineral?
1. All minerals are formed by natural processes.
2. Minerals are inorganic.
3. They are all solids.
4. Every mineral is an element or compound with a chemical composition unique to that mineral.
5. The atoms in a mineral are arranged in a pattern that is repeated over and over again.
What properties in titanium make it useful in sports equipment and biomedical research?
Durability, light weight and non toxic metal.
Which two minerals are ores of titanium?
Ilmenite and Rutile
What is matter?
Matter is anything that has mass and takes up space.
What are atoms?
The building blocks of matter.
What makes up the nucleus of an atom?
Protons and neutrons.
What are isotopes?
Atoms of the same element. They have the same atomic number, but differ in their number of neutrons.
What is a substance made of two or more elements?
A compound.
What is a rock?
A mixture of one or more minerals, mineraloids, glass, or organic matter.
What includes all processess by which rocks form?
The rock cycle
What is magma?
Molten material that hardens to form igneous rocks.
What is the difference between intrusive igneous rocks and extrusive igneous rocks?
Intrusive igneous rocks form when magma cools BELOW the Earth's surface.

Extrusive igneous rocks form when lava cools AT OR NEAR the Earth's surface.
What rocks are dense, heavy and dark colored?
What rocks are light colored and less dense than basalts?
What rocks are intermediate between basaltics and granitics?
What can cause metamorphic rocks to form?
Increases in heat and pressure.

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