JOHN MEAD / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JOHN MEAD / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
An open cast copper mine located at Morenci in Arizona, USA. The coloured areas are due to the presence of minerals such as malachite (green), azurite (blue) and cuprite (red), all secondary copper minerals. Malachite is a valuable decorative stone. Previously it was crushed & used as an inorganic pigment (mountain green). Azurite is normally found in association with malachite, which often replaces it pseudomorphically (one mineral occurring in the crystal form of another), through hydration. Azurite is also used as a decorative stone although more fragile. An inorganic pigment (mountain blue, or Armenia stone) was obtained from crushing the stone.
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