Cut and polished agate

Cut and polished agate

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Credit: DIRK WIERSMA/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Cut and polished agate. This agate formed following precipitation of chalcedony (coloured) and quartz (white) inside cracks or voids in a rock. Both are forms of silica. The coloured parts are tinted by impurities of some metallic element, like copper or iron. Although the chalcedony is non-crystalline, it has precipitated in a semi-crystalline dendritic (branch-like) pattern.

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Keywords: agate, chalcedony, close-up, colour, colourful, colours, crystal, crystalline, crystals, cut, dendritic, deposit, deposits, detail, earth science, filled, geological, geology, impurities, impurity, layer, layers, metal, mineral, mineralogy, minerals, polished, precipitated, precipitation, quartz, rock, rocks, section, sectioned, silica, void

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