What is Diopside?
Geologic Occurrence of Diopside
|A very nice specimen of Diopside from Minas Gerais Brazil |
with a distinct crystal surface formation.
Diopside as a Diamond Indicator MineralMost diamonds found at or near Earth's surface were delivered from the mantle during deep-source volcanic eruptions. These diamonds occur in vertical igneous structures known as pipes, which are often composed of kimberlite or peridotite.
Diopside as an Industrial Mineral
Geographic Distribution of Diopside
Properties of Diopside
|Composition||Calcium magnesium silicate, often with some iron|
|Colour||Light to dark green, gray, yellow, light blue, purple, and white. May also be green with thin white streaks running though a crystal. Rarely colorless or multicoloured.|
|Streak||White to light green|
|Hardness||5 - 6|
|Crystal Forms |
|Usually as single, short prismatic crystals. Crystals may also be somewhat elongated, and usually have good terminations. Also massive, grainy, columnar, bladed, radiating, fibrous, as cleavage fragments, and in disordered aggregates of elongated crystals. May also be in v-shaped penetration twins, and crystals from certain localities have partially hollow or dissolved etchings.|
|Transparency||Transparent to opaque|
|Specific Gravity||3.3 - 3.6|
|Cleavage||1,2 - prismatic at cleavage angles of 87º and 93º (Characteristic of minerals in the pyroxene group). May also exhibit parting in one direction.|
|Fracture||Uneven to splintery|
|Other ID Marks||White forms of Diopside are occasionally fluorescent.|
|In Group||Silicates; Inosilicates; Pyroxene Group|
|Striking Features||Colour, cleavage angles, and localities|
|Environment||Contact and regional metamorphic rocks in hornfels, and in skarn deposits of hydrothermal metamorphic rock.|