Minerals > Density

Density

The density, or specific gravity, of a substance is a measure of how much matter is packed into a certain space. It is the ratio of the mass of a substance relative to the mass of an equal volume of water. A mineral with a density of 2 is twice as heavy as water of the same volume. Minerals with low densities that feel “light” include graphite, talc, gypsum, halite, and quartz. Moderately dense minerals that feel a “little heavy” include cassiterite, crocoite, cuprite, mimetite, pyromorphite, vanadinite, and wulfenite. Very dense minerals that feel “quite heavy” include bismuth, gold, silver, platinum, and sperrylite.

Photos

Chalcoalumite-w
Devilline-w

All specimens from the David J. Eicher Mineral Collection; images © David J. Eicher