Course textbook and primary resources
Optional useful general mineralogy resources
- Perkins online mineralogy open-source textbook
- Johnson et al. optical mineralogy / petrology interactive e-book and tutorial
- Raith et al. open-access Guide to Thin Section Microscopy
- Optional book on reserve in the library: DHZ Introduction to the Rock-Forming-Minerals – summaries of mineral diagnostic properties, excellent summary of chemical variations, summaries of geological occurrences, etc.
- Nesse optical mineralogy book
- Nesse mineralogy textbook (formerly used as main textbook for the course)
Online mineralogy databases
- Mindat.org – amazing resource for mineral stats, localities, photos, wow!
- Mineralogical Society of America Crystal Structure Database
This is my go-to resource for downloading free crystal structures (.amc/.cif) and powder X-ray diffraction data (list of d-spacings and intensities, etc.)
- Mincryst crystallographic database
- RRUFF database designed for Raman spectroscopy and X-ray diffraction. The CrystalSleuth program is useful for matching Raman spectra to minerals.
- Webmineral is another general mineral info website similar to Mindat. Includes useful X-ray search function. Also a page that will allow you to search minerals by physical and optical properties.
‘Khan academy’ for mineralogy
check out this YouTube channel
Petrography | optical microscopy
Raith et al. open-access Guide to Thin Section Microscopy
- Photo atlas of minerals in thin section: microckscopic.ro ; igneous minerals (Hollacher); metamorphic minerals (Oxford); NOVA mineralogy; Perkins optical mineralogy website with mineral details; Siddell
- Video atlas of minerals in thin section: Matt Kohn (recommended), rockptx, MAGIC GigaPans
- Photo atlas of rocks in thin section, with links to minerals:
- alexstrekeisen.it/ many thin section photos of rocks and minerals, best for petrology. Good pages for individual minerals – if you click on a rock type then the constituent minerals appear on the side you can click on.
- MAGIC GigaPan image collection of rock and mineral thin sections and video channel; Mid-Atlantic Geo-Image Collection (M.A.G.I.C.)
- Oxford image collection of rocks in thin section (not interactive)
- General petrography video tutorials
- Earth Optics petrography skills video tutorials
- GeoHub Liverpool Intro to looking at rocks in thin section
- Virtual interference figures allows you to display calculated interference figures based on properties you enter
- How thin sections are made: Hirsch,Spectrum Petrographic
- Maintenance and care of petrographic microscopes: how to clean optics;
Hand sample identification
- A practical online study guide to mineral ID (hand samples)
Organizations with useful mineralogical resources
- International Mineralogical Association (includes the people that decide on mineral names and classification)
- Mineralogical Society of America
- Oklahoma Gem and Mineral Society
YouTube channel for discussions with mineralogists
MineralTalks Live. discussions with mineral collectors
Crystallography and symmetry
- EscherSketch! point group drawing
- Smorf 3D drawing of crystal forms
- Miller index interactive visualizer
- Symmetry of crystals detailed introduction with useful reference tables and figures
- WVU sketchfab crystallography and crystal structure collection
- Visible Geology online Stereonet app
Software for visualizing crystal structures
- CrystalMaker is the professional program (unfortunately paid) I use for research and teaching with crystal structures. They used to have a free CrystalViewer, but I think it’s discontinued. This is also the program the authors used to generate the structures and illustrations from our textbook.
- Vesta open-source program that opens .amc files from the Mineralogical Society of America Crystal Structure Database or .cif files. Works on any operating system platform.
- XtalDraw and CrystalSleuth are older but still good programs for displaying crystal structures and analyzing Raman data, for Windows systems.
- Rocks and Minerals in Thin Section (Second edition) by W.S. MacKenzie, A.E. Adams & K.H.Brodie (2017). A concise, illustrated introduction to observation, description and identification of geological samples in thin section. Aimed at undergraduate level.
many others in the future!