Crystal Formation Task

initial research

A crystal is a solid piece of matter formed in a regular shape and repeated patterns. crystals are formed by ions, molecules and atoms combined together. There are several types of general forms and shapes (called latices) that the crystal will form.

Most crystals which are formed take millions of years grow after the earth's liquid has hardened and cooled. Other more basic types of crystals such as salts take much less time to form. Metal, Alum, borx and sugar are the four main substances to make crystals.

After correct ingredients have been combined, the next day crystal formation will have began. this process will begin with the development of many small crystals on the bottomost layer within the beaker. one the access liquid has been removed and stored for later, the crystals should be left alone in a beaker to grow spontaneously. A main crystal will be selected and placed whilst the smaller crystals continue to grow. the crystals will grow at a normal pace but your selected crystal will grow at a more rapid pace.

Crystals grow in various shapes and colours; this is mainly because of the internal symmetry of the crystal. Things such as pressure, temperature and chemical/mineral conditions also contribute to the large range of crystals thatcan be formed.

There are several types of crystals. they are classified according to shape. they are the cubic, trigonal, hexagonal, tetragonal, orthorhombic, triclinic and the monoclniic. A few different types of crystals are...

EMERALD: a dark green crystal which is generally formed in the same conditions as all crystals. Its name is self explanitory to it's colour. Emeralds are classed as hexagonal crystals; this means that they have and axis that allows six sides to be formed.

EMETHYST: amethys is produced in abundance from the state of Minas Gerais in Brazil where it occurs in large geodes within volcanic rocks. It has a light purple/ pink colour. amethysts slots into the trigonal structure of crystals.

QUARTZ: Quartz belongs to the trginal crystal system. The ideal crystal shape is a six-sided prism terminating with siz-sided pyramids at each end. In nature Quartz crystals are often winned or distorted.

When light travels through a crystal, it will speed up like it would through a diamond. Therefore the light would travel away from the normal. Dispersion would occur in more prism shaped crystals.

The optimum conditions for crystal growth are dark, damp places which are also warm.



Day 1 -
Before the combined and mixed substance was filtered, the
substance was slightly cloudy and dirty. Once is was filtered, little pieces of dirt were restricted from filtering through to the beaker. as the water settled, it looked like normal water.

Day 2 -
no crystals were formed over night, so the experiment had to be re-started.
Solution level: 1.9 cm's
I took the crystals home on this day.

Day 9 - The crystals have not grown at all, but many smaller crystals have formed and stuck the the bottom of the jar like a layer.
Solution level: 1.83 cm's

Day 12 - The smaller crystals continue to spread where as the larger crystals have still not grown.
Solution level: 1.69 cm's

Day 16 - The larger crystals have grown slightly, the smaller crystals have combined to make one medium sized crystal.
Solution level: 1.57 cm's

Day 20 - The large crystal has grown again, almost doubling in size (2.4 cm's). The solution has almost completely gone. The jar still has the filter paper on top and no changes have been made to positioning regarding light/sun.

When taking the final photographs with the light entering the crystal, a very slight dispersion of light occurred (as pictured above). The light split into Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet. It was difficult to photograph the crystal whilst keeping the camera focused, crystal still and light correct.

Activity - fill in the blanks

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