Borate Minerals – April 22

Boron is a rather rare element in Earth; its geochemistry causes it to concentrate in Earth’s crust. Of the 5688 mineral species known at this writing, 301 contain boron, or 5.3% of the mineral kingdom; that is about 1 in 20 mineral species… 295 of the 301 boron minerals contain oxygen. Boron coordinates with oxygen in two configurations: triangular planar BO3 or tetrahedral BO4. Interconnections of these two types of borate anions and along with other anions (i.e. silicate) and water molecules lead to significant mineral diversity. Boron is essential to the axinite and tourmaline group minerals, and to species boracite and datolite. Some boron minerals contain significant water, making them soft and unstable, such as ulexite and kurnakovite. Certain gem exotic borates are quite hard such painite as johachidolite.

This gallery contains 24 specimens.