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Mineral Fun and Information Page
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Follow this link to see "The Dynamic Earth," a multimedia presentation by the Smithsonian's Museum of Natural History, and explore gems, minerals, rocks, mining, earth movements, volcanoes, meteorites, and more: CLICK ON Multimedia Version once there>
FUN: Light bulb Whats a light bulb made of
http://library.thinkquest.org/J002289/index.html This Planet really Rocks - all about rocks & minerals for kids
Interesting mineral related fact
Rain, is water in the atmosphere occurring through evaporation. That water cannot become rain until it first becomes ice. Ice cant form until it gets an impurity to freeze to. So even at many degrees below freezing in the atmosphere the water cant freeze with out that impure nucleus. The impurity that the water freezes to can be just about anything. It can be dust from a desert dust storm, carbon from a forest fire, pollen, micro mineral, a microbial organism even a micro meteorite from a passing comet or other space dust. It can even be from 100s, 1000s or millions of years ago, there is still dust from the age of dinosaurs in the atmosphere.
The water molecules attach and freeze on the nucleus until it becomes heavy enough to fall and what it falls as (rain, snow, sleet) depends on air tem near the surface. If you catch rain in a pan and then pass a strong magnet in the water for a few minutes you can actually pick up micro meteorites which are commonly Iron on the magnet and then look at them under a microscope. You can also look at other impurities that fell in the rain under a microscope and pick out pollens and carbon molecules.
Its estimated that about 10,000 tons of stuff that’s trapped in the rain and snow falls on the Earth every year.
Fact…Rain is not a mineral. A mineral has to be an inorganic SOLID meaning that rain that falls and freezes naturally becomes a mineral, snow, sleet, and hail is a mineral. Ice cubes made with tap water don’t qualify, they are not naturally occurring.
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