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Alexandrite

By J. Gual
About
Alexandrite
About the mine

About the gem


About its history
How to buy it References
About the mineralogy

Environment
Inclusions
Colour Phenomena
Chrysoberyl Species
Physical and Chemical Properties
Physical and Chemical Propertie
Alexandrite it's included in the Chrysoberyl gr
BeAl2O4
Double oxide of Beryllium and Aluminum
Colour change
Orthorombic
Raspberry-like purple
Tabular crystals with 2
Al2O3 CrO3
well developed pinaco
Alexandrite from the Ural
Grass-like Green can display cyclic twins.
Density: 3,71 ~ 3,72 (g
Hardness : 8 ½ (Mosh)
Irregular to concoidal
Different kinds of colo
Chrysoberyl Species

Color Change Alexandrite


and chatoyancy
Chrysoberyl Color Change

Cat's Eye
Chatoyancy
The “Maharani” chrysoberyl
cat’s-eye
Locality: Sri Lanka
Weight 58.2 carats
Collection: Smithsonian
Institution
Alexandrite Ca
Colour Phenomena
Pleochroism The absorption of the d
kind of lights change w
Colour Change orientation of the cryst
axis
Main property of Alexandrite
Orthorrombical system
Alexandrite from Ural M
Absorption
Cr
Due to the γ= 1,759
β= 1,753 α-γ = 0,094
Be(Al,
BeAl 2O4)2O4 α=1,749

Octahedrical position Greenish – blueish


Purplish
colourscolou

2 transmission windows (blue and red)

Different kinds of light


Inclusions
Produces the chatoyancy effect named as “Cat's E
Inclusion similar to the
presented in Rubies
Usually in Russian Alex

The triangular platinum crystals which were eroded


from the crucible in which this synthetic Alexandrite
was formed (proof of its man-made origin)
Produced by short acicular inclusions or cavities orien
in the same direction as the main principal axis
Environment
All the alexandrite in the world i
being
High already formed
water content [250 (Ma.)
(remanent magm
Nowadaysand
Temperature it'sPression
possibleareto
lowfind
Chrysober

Rich in REE, Silica (SiO2) & Beryl (Be)

Granite Mica Rolled


Pegmatites
Schists
Pegmatitic Pebbles
Environment
In contact w
metamorph
From river sands and gravels in alluvial

CrO3
deposits with corundum, spinel,
deposits of
Alexandrite
garnet and tourmaline
dolomitc ma
Always associated with quartz
Sri Lank
Russian Alexandrites
Brasil
About the gem

Simulants and synthet


Alexandrites
The cut
The cut
An Alexandrite gem stone has a variety of
The more usual
Alexandrite Cat's
are:
Eye variety is always cut
It could be with an oval base or a rounded

Pear Round Cushion Oval

Triangle Octagonal Trillion


Simulants and synthetic
Alexandrites
The most common simulant it's
synthetic corundum
Different physical properties
Different change colour
Also it's used: Quartz, spinel, and
other synthetic materials.
Natural Alexandr

Inclusions
High dichroism Low intensity of
About its History

Myths, Legends &

Chronological Backstory
Chronological Backstory
1790: A. Gottlob Werner (German Geologist) described the mineral Ch
1833: In the mica schist if the Tokovaya river (Ural Mountains)
is discovered a greenish crystal that appear purplish under candleligh
1834: Count Lev A. Perovskii present the colour-changing stone with
the name of Alexandrite, in honor to the Tsarevitch Alexander (Future
Tzar Alexander II)
1842: Alexandrite it's officially described.
1881: Tzar Alexander II dies by a bomb. Alexandrite becomes the sym
of the Russian Monarchists.
1909: The first synthetic color-changing corundum is used as a simula
Alexandrite.
1973: In the USA was patented and manufactured synthetic alexandri
the flux method.
1992: Allexite is the name used to Alexandrite manufactured crystals
Czochralski growing method.
Myths, Legends & Lore
Alexandrite it's a relative new gem: ~20
Birthstone (zodiac
the planets or the
Good luckMisfortune

Russian Monarchy U.S.S.R.: Simulant


the association of green
of Alexandrite
and red was
was the imperial themea symbol
of Russia
of mis-
fortune. Most of
the families lost
someone in
Related with the
the WWII.
duality of the human blood:
venous and arterial
How to buy it

Prizes

Buyers guide
Buyers guide
Prizes