general news issue 64

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general news issue 64

Remember the Popigai crater from 35 million years ago, or after a recent study now thought to be 33.7 million years ago which being one of the 10 largest impact sites known also suggests it could be linked to the Eocene extinction.
Apparently it was also a potential major diamond source, however due to it’s remoteness and synthesised industrial diamonds it may never be ‘exploited’ fully.

rockngem magazine issue64

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Think about...
A new ‘rock’ called plastiglomerate, a combination of shells, basalt, sand, coral and wood fragments bonded together by melted plastic. Melted from natural sources such as lava or by fire, the new material is thought to present a permanent record in the earths geological structure, which will be known as the time humans significantly altered the earth. Whether recorded in the current epoch (Holocene) or the suggested Anthropocene (once scientists agree).

We survived the passing of ‘the beast’, discovered only a few weeks ago (worryingly?) a huge asteroid of 352m passed by at 3 lunar distances away(that’s the distance between the earth & moon) however NASA thinks they know of 90% of space material this size and above...

Further studies of the Chelyabinsk  meteorite from last year has seen jadeite within glassy shock veins, which suggests it had been bumping around before landing. Interesting unlike other examples this jadeite appears to have crystallised from being melted. Studies of this kind are important because impacts overhead can of course alter projected paths of near earth objects (NEO).

Want a little consistency when buying your diamonds, well PhotoScribe have been granted a patent to use a laser to measure the brilliance, fire, scintillation, contrast, optical symmetry and coverage. The results will translated into grades. The new application will measure the “beauty of a diamond”

Hallmarking Rise
For those involved in the jewellery industry hallmarking figures for April show yet another increase for gold and silver with 9ct gold having the largest at almost 50% definitely an indicator for the remainder of 2014.

Researchers suggest after studying Acasta Gneiss complex rocks from Canada (over 4 billion years old) that Iceland is representative of how early earth was with magma rising in shallow water also containing volcanic debris, plate tectonics may not have been present at this time.

Fancy adding a specimen of bridgmanite (a silicate mineral with perovskite) to your collection, although the most abundant mineral on the planet, it might be a little difficult because it’s approximately 400 - 1800 miles underground. After various experiments and studying seismic data scientists are convinced what the mineral is but needed a natural example to document the mineral structure, studying the Tenham meteorite using synchrotron X-ray diffraction identified the mineral as MgSiO3 the meteorite had been highly shocked on it’s journey which is similar to the effects of pressure and heat within the earth, University of Nevada researcher Tschaunder said “Shocked meteorites are the only accessible source of natural specimens of minerals that we know to be rock-forming in the transition zone of the Earth”.

Professor Takeshi Kakegawa from Tohoku University Japan has found high concentrations of Boron in Greenlands Isua’s marine rocks, boron can stabilise Ribose a component of RNA which its believed is a precursor to life. The Boron being an element of tourmaline was trapped in garnet crystals on the sea floor after lava, sediments were deposited. Further researchers suggest that Boron could’ve been present in the sea water throughout this time period up to today.

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