Where does mica come from?
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Q:

Where does mica come from?

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Quick Answer

Mica is a metamorphic mineral that comes from volcanoes and hydrothermal vents. It is easily recognized by its thin crystal layers that peel off in sheets. Mica is very shiny and is responsible for the glittery effect in composite rocks such as granite, gneiss and slate.

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Full Answer

Mica is composed of silicon and oxygen. Biotite, muscovite and boromuscovite are three common variations. Mica is an excellent insulator and has many electrical applications. Mica is white, yellowish, green or gray, and can be found on most continents. The largest deposits are found in India, South Dakota, Russia and Brazil. In addition to its use in electronics, mica has many artistic applications.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is the chemical composition of mica?

    A:

    Mica is a family of minerals primarily composed of silicon, oxygen and aluminum, with varied other metals depending on the specific mica in question. Mica molecules are based on the basic form of the silica sheet, which is a mass of silicon and oxygen arranged in flat, friable plates.

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  • Q:

    What are some examples of nonmetallic minerals?

    A:

    Examples of nonmetallic minerals include sulfur, phosphorus, iodine, carbon, selenium, limestone, dolomite, gemstones, clay and mica. Nonmetallic minerals are minerals that do not contain metal. Physically, they are very volatile and have low elasticity. Chemically, they have high ionization energy.

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  • Q:

    How is mica formed?

    A:

    There is no definitive evidence to fully explain the formation of mica as the process is still under scientific study as of 2015. However, mica formation is said to be closely associated with the lack of orthoclase feldspar in pegmatites, which is where the mineral is predominantly found.

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  • Q:

    What minerals are used to make glass?

    A:

    Common minerals that are used in glass production include antimony, feldspar, lead, lithium, quartz, silica, sodium carbonate, tantalum, calcite, gypsum, muscovite mica and orthoclase. The principal ingredient of glass is sand, which is primarily composed of quartz or silica.

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