Lake Superior agate

Lake Superior agate

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Credit: NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM, LONDON/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Unweathered Lake Superior agate. Agate is an aggregate of different forms of silica (SiO2) that have formed concentric bands within a geode. A geode forms when the silica precipitates from liquid onto the inside surface of an empty pocket in a host rock. The outer layers are variegated forms of chalcedony (amorphous or non-crystalline silica), with the layers becoming more crystalline towards the centre. These agates are stained by iron and found on the shores of Lake Superior, USA. Specimen from a mine in the Keweenaw Peninsula, Michigan, USA.

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Keywords: agate, amorphous, bands, chalcedony, cross section, cross-section, cut, earth science, geode, geological, geology, lake superior agate, michigan, mineral, mineralogy, pattern, patterned, patterns, polished, rings, section, sectioned, silica, silicon dioxide, slice, specimen, stone, surface, unweathered, variegated

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