Fluorite, the Natural Rainbow Colored Mineral Used in Jewelry, Glass Making, High Octane Fuel, Teflon Cookware and More
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Fluorite, the Natural Rainbow Colored Mineral Used in Jewelry, Glass Making, High Octane Fuel, Teflon Cookware and More

Fluorite is referred to as Calcium Fluoride and occurs in well-formed cubic or octahedral crystals that come in a variety of colors including green, blue, purple, yellow, clear, violet and several other shades in between. It is commonly referred to as "rainbow" Fluorite. It is a soft stone; ranking only 4 on the Moh's hardness scale. It has a vitreous luster with streaks of white and has a variety of uses.

Fluorite is referred to as Calcium Fluoride and occurs in well-formed cubic or octahedral crystals that come in a variety of colors including green, blue, purple, yellow, clear, violet and several other shades in between. It is commonly referred to as "rainbow" Fluorite. It is a soft stone; ranking only 4 on the Moh's hardness scale. It has a vitreous luster with streaks of white and has a variety of uses. It is a known phosphorescent mineral that reacts to exposure of ultraviolet light.

The Ancient Egyptians and Chinese have used Fluorite in statues and carvings throughout history, and in the 18th century, Fluorite was added to water to alleviate symptoms associated with kidney disease. Fluorite has also been favored as a natural mineral crystal for its use in jewelry but one of its more common uses in recent centuries has been for the creation of vases, cups and glass making. In the first century A.D, it was commonly mined by the Romans who particularly liked using Fluorite to craft stone vessels from which they drank their wine. Artist John LaFarge first developed and patented opalescent glass in 1879 from the use of Fluorite. Using a slower-cooling process of molten glass where parts are thick, crystallization occurs inside the glass, producing an opalescent sheen. Although John first developed this process, it was Louis Comfort Tiffany who became recognized for creating colorful Art Nouveau opalescent glass designs. At that time in the 1920's and 1930's, other artists including companies in France created vases, bottles and even lampshades with this particular opalescent glass.

 In lesser known ways of being used, Fluorite is a source of Fluorine which has been the source of Fluoride that has been added to the water supply of many city water systems today. However, this has created controversy over whether or not it is beneficial or hazardous to human health, as it was discovered to be tested on people in WWII as a bio-agent of warfare. Today, many physicians and health care experts voice their concerns about the adverse reactions humans suffer as a result of ingesting Fluoride altogether.

Flourine has also been a common component to the creation of Teflon. It is what makes Teflon a "non-stick" coating on the surface of the pans. Fluoride also has further industrial uses such as a Flux in the manufacturing of steel and in the production of hydrofluoric acid. It is also used in the manufacturing of high-octane fuels and artificial cryolite for the refining of aluminum, lead and enamelware of steel and iron.

Fluorite occurs as a natural vein mineral which is often associated with lead and silver ores. It is also occurs in pegmatite cavities which can be found worldwide. However, some of the most prevalent areas where Fluorite can be located are Canada, the U.S., Mexico, South Africa, China, Norway, Spain, England Peru, Poland, Germany and the Czech Republic.

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