Mineralogy

Definition

Mineralogy is the study of minerals, the building blocks of rocks, which are naturally-occurring, crystalline solids with a set chemical make-up. This includes the study of the chemical composition and physical properties of minerals, as well as mineral formation and geographic distribution, with particular emphasis on minerals with economic value.

Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • News and Views |

    The geological record preserves scant evidence for early plate tectonics. Analysis of eclogites — metamorphic rocks formed in subduction zones — in the Trans-Hudson mountain belt suggests modern-style subduction may have operated 1,800 million years ago.

    • Clare Warren
    Nature Geoscience 10, 245–246
  • News and Views |

    Anomalously bright spots are seen on the dark cratered surface of the dwarf planet Ceres. The Dawn spacecraft's detection of sodium carbonates in bright areas is consistent with aqueous activity in an ice-poor and salty regolith.

    • Mikhail Zolotov
    Nature Geoscience 9, 476–477
  • News and Views |

    The volcanic eruption that created the Ontong Java Plateau released large quantities of carbon dioxide. A reconstruction of CO2 concentrations suggests that the eruption promoted climate change and the expansion of ocean anoxia.

    • Heather M. Stoll
  • News and Views |

    Clear evidence for subduction-induced metamorphism, and thus the operation of plate tectonics on the ancient Earth has been lacking. Theoretical calculations indicate that we may have been looking for something that cannot exist.

    • Jun Korenaga