Saturday, July 26, 2014

Aquamarine

Aquamarine, from the Latin aqua and mare meaning water and sea, is a blue variety of the mineral beryl, with the chemical composition Be3Al2(SiO3).

Bead grade aquamarine usually has inclusions and opaque areas. Gem quality aquamarine has no inclusions giving exceptional brilliance. Colours can range from light sky blue to deep sea blue. It has been coveted as a gemstone for ages.

Today the principal sources of aquamarine are Brazil, India, Russia, Mozambique, Madagascar, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
In the commercial market, aquamarine competes with treated blue topaz for attention, but fine aquamarine sells for far more than equivalent-quality treated blue topaz. The purer and more intense the blue color, the more valuable the stone. Most aquamarine is a light greenish blue. Although some buyers prefer the more greenish natural color, most of the aquamarine in the market is heat-treated to give it more of a pure colour.

Aquamarine in Montana - "Prospectors"