Articles on Zircon

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A collection of raw Libyan desert glass. Linnas/Shutterstock

How we solved the mystery of Libyan desert glass

The origin of Libyan desert glass found scattered in an Egyptian desert has puzzled scientists for years. But a new look at the glass structure reveals its meteoric formation.
Scientists working at the central peak of Gosses Bluff meteorite crater in Northern Territory. Nick Timms

How rare minerals form when meteorites slam into Earth

A meteorite hitting Earth at many kilometres per second puts 'ground zero' target rocks under immense pressure. A shock wave faster than the speed of sound can result – and new materials created.
Diamond or zirconia? Apart from the price, it can be hard to tell these two gems apart. from www.shutterstock.com

A disappointing earring, and the world’s hottest rock: zirconia

Zirconia is a mineral with a crystal structure made from the elements zirconium and oxygen. It looks pretty like diamond, but is only worth a fraction of the value.

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