Where do minerals come from? Interesting article...

flowerbug

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one bit that stands out quickly:

""The biggest punchline of that paper was that more than half of all minerals on Earth are a consequence of living systems," he said."


but there is a lot more interesting pondering there besides.


for those who don't care much about science i'm sure such articles aren't even read, but as a gardener, i want to understand what is going on out there in the world around me and even things happening under my feet.

of course, other parts are interesting too, like the Mono Lake hazenite crystals. microbial crystaline poop. microbes living in such an extreme environment that they can't get rid of alkaline phosphate so they have to excrete it as a crystal. i dunno about you but figuring out these microbes and having them able to excrete mineral crystals of various types could be very useful (perhaps in low gravity places like space too).
 
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Ridgerunner

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Interesting article, thanks for posting. There is a reason some scientists can make a topic interesting and maybe even explain it in a way someone without a PhD in that subject can understand. Those are talented people.

The first thing I did after reading that was look up a definition of "mineral". It wasn't exactly what I expected. I'm not going to try to define it but one thing that stood out to me is that different minerals can be comprised of the same elements. What makes them a different mineral is the way the elements are chemically put together. I knew that but I'm not sure how much I realized that until it was pointed out. I'm not going to define element either.
 

flowerbug

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... I'm not going to define element either.

you're welcome. :) i've always been interested in earth sciences and science in general.

one of the interesting topics in science history is the development of the idea of what the elements were.

imagine starting off all those years ago and determining you had four elements (air, earth, water, fire) and then how to explain they worked together and then finding out that there were such things as atoms, isotopes, electrical charges, magnetic fields, the light spectrum and all that has followed to now where we have 118 elements and are still looking for more.
 

Zeedman

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An interesting presentation. As someone who had an early interest in mineralogy, I was really hoping to hear more about the 10 stages of mineral evolution. In my area, the first layer of rock is limestone, which was formed when much of the Midwest was ocean bottom. And the iron deposits were likewise ocean bottom, the iron minerals having been precipitated out of the early oceans by the first cyanobacteria-produced oxygen .

As a gardener, the thing which fascinates me is how all the micro nutrients needed by plants are so widely distributed in soil (in varying concentrations) regardless of the composition of the underlying bedrock.
 

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one bit that stands out quickly:

""The biggest punchline of that paper was that more than half of all minerals on Earth are a consequence of living systems," he said."


but there is a lot more interesting pondering there besides.


for those who don't care much about science i'm sure such articles aren't even read, but as a gardener, i want to understand what is going on out there in the world around me and even things happening under my feet.

of course, other parts are interesting too, like the Mono Lake hazenite crystals. microbial crystaline poop. microbes living in such an extreme environment that they can't get rid of alkaline phosphate so they have to excrete it as a crystal. i dunno about you but figuring out these microbes and having them able to excrete mineral crystals of various types could be very useful (perhaps in low gravity places like space too).
If you find any microbes that poop diamonds could you let me know? Thanks for the link. I am going to read it next and am starting out in that phase where I have become aware that bacteria can dissolve rock with enzymes. So the carbon, hydrogen and oxygen in a sugar like molasses is not only full of the major plant nutrients that compliment NPK, but also attracts bacteria, which in turn have enrichment powers and themselves attract fungi whose hyphae are capable of drawing up deeper soil moisture. I wonder if the article will impact any of my perceived facts about these intermixed processes and so I am curious to read it.
 

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