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Earth Science Chapter 3 - Summary Notes
á A mineral is a naturally formed, inorganic solid with a crystalline structure. That means it isnŐt person-made, it isnŐt from a living thing, it isnŐt a gas or liquid, and it has a repeating inner structure.
á Minerals are made of one or more types of elements. The earthŐs crust has about 92 elements.
á Each element is made of only one kind of atom. An atom is the smallest part of an element that has all the elementŐs properties.
á Two or more elements can chemically join to make a compound. Most minerals are compounds.
á Minerals have two major classes. Silicate minerals include silicon and oxygen. They make up 90% of the minerals in the earthŐs crust. Nonsilicate minerals donŐt have silicon and oxygen.
á The way a surface reflects light is called luster. The shiniest minerals have metallic luster.
á The hardness scale for minerals ranges from 1 to 10, with 10 being the hardest. Talc is 1 and diamond is 10. Minerals can only scratch other minerals lower on the hardness scale.
á Some minerals have important uses, such as Chalcopyrite for coins and Galena for batteries.
á Other minerals are valued because they are attractive. Rare and attractive minerals are called gemstones.
á Minerals are nonrenewable resources. The more we recycle them, the more we will have in the future.