Where Are Beryllium Elements Found in Nature?

Beryllium is an element on the periodic table. It is not found alone in nature but does occur in many natural minerals. Beryl is the mineral most commonly associated with beryllium, which it contains, and grows as a transparent crystal. Beryllium is used to produce beryllium copper that engineers put into spacecraft, airplanes and satellites. Also, beryllium is used in nuclear power plants, computers and gyroscopes.

  1. Beryl

    • An emerald is a type of beryl crystal.
      An emerald is a type of beryl crystal.

      Beryl is a colorless, transparent crystal that is very common and is found growing naturally all over the world. Beryl contains and is named after the element beryllium. The impurities in crystal beryl cause a vast range of color varieties in this natural stone. These colored crystals are used in jewelry making as gemstones. The popular precious gem emerald and the stone aquamarine are both varieties of beryl. Morganite, heliodor, golden beryl, goshenite and red beryl are other gems made of this crystal.

    Bertrandite

    • Bertrandite is a crystal is commonly associated with and sometimes mistaken for beryl. Bertrandite is a colorless to yellow transparent crystal often found growing on beryllium-rich stones such as beryl. Bertrandite has also been known to replace the beryl crystal forming a pseudo-morph of the original crystal. The name of this crystal comes from Leon Bertrand, who found bertrandite in France in 1883.

    Granite

    • Granite is one of the most common stones on Earth. The texture of this igneous rock is granular with large crystals suspended. It is very common to find chunks of beryl in granite stone along with feldspar, quartz and topaz. The crystals within granite are usually large enough to be easily seen and often identified with the naked eye. This is because most granite cools slowly beneath the Earth’s surface in long legs. Granite that erupts onto the surface is called rhyolite or pegmatite according to the size of its crystals. Beryllium is found in these two varieties of granite as well.

    Phenakite

    • Phenakite is found alongside beryllium crystals like beryl, emerald, aquamarine and chrysoberyl. It is also found in the company of quartz and topaz. Color is clear, pink, brown or yellow, and this crystal is hard, rating at a 6 on the geologic hardness scale. The name comes from the Greek word Phenocite, which means deceiver. This is because it was so hard to tell apart from quartz, it deceived people into thinking it was quartz.

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  • Photo Credit beryl molecule image by Vladislav Gajic from Fotolia.com emerald ring image by studio vision1 from Fotolia.com

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