Mineralogy Research

in George Rossman's Group

Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences

Summer 2024

California Institute of Technology

Caltech Students and Major Collaborators at Caltech and Elsewhere

Will  EronHelen Paolo Seneca       ChiHousley
George Rossman
Dr. William Palfey
H in metal oxides
 Eran Funaro
Intervalence systems
Helen Evans
Intervalence systems
Paolo Sanchez
Mineral Synthesis
Seneca Velling
Hydrothermal system minerals
Dr. Chi Ma 
GPS Analytical Facility
Dr. Robert Housley
new minerals
Dr. Glenn Waychunas

Current Projects in Mineralogy

  1. Hydrous Components in Nominally Anhydrous Minerals
  2. Analytical Calibration of the Spectrum of OH in Minerals
  3. Spectroscopy of Minerals
         The RRUFF project
  4. New minerals in meteorites and terresterial materials
  5. Spectroscopy of manganese in minerals
  6. Intervalence chanrge transfer in minerals
  7. Benitoite synthesis and origin of color

Previous Projects in Mineralogy

  1. Silica products of basaltic weathering
  2. OH in crustal minerals - feldspars and pyroxenes
  3. Nano-phases in rose quartz
  4. The origin of green color in quartz from amethyst deposits
  5. Martian Surface Mineralogy
  6. Instrumentation development - tunable laser spectrometer
  7. Undergraduate Research: nano-inclusions in minerals
  8. Undergraduate Research: Temperature dependence of OH in minerals
  9. Undergraduate Research: OH in tourmaline
  10. Undergraduate Research: thermochromic garnets
  11. Undergraduate Research: Studies of the rare mineral painite
  12. Undergraduate Research: OH in spodumene

Former Group Members


Our laboratory facilities

Publication list including data files and figures from recent publications

The Mineral Spectroscopy Server

On-line information on the absorption spectra and color of minerals.

Information on the origin of color in minerals and gems
Data files available as ASCII (wavelength, absorbance) pairs [more than a thousand files]
Images of selected mineral spectra
Extensive references to mineral optical spectroscopy  [more than 600 references] 


information on manganese dendrites [They are not pyrolusite!]
information of desert varnish
information on ametrine [amethyst - citrine bicolored quartz]
information on painite [ formerly one of the rarest minerals]

Go to the Mineral Spectroscopy Server 


Raman Spectra on the Mineral Spectroscopy Server have been placed with the RRUFF Project, a project under the direction of Professor Robert Downs at the University of Arizona, in collaboration with Caltech Mineralogy. Numerous Caltech infrared ATR spectra of minerals are also being placed on this site. The RRUFF Project contains the largest collection of quality Raman spectra of minerals available from any source. It also has one of the largest (but still incomplete) collections of mineral ATR data.

Other Mineral-related science at Caltech:

high pressure mineralogy zeolite chemistry

See a journey down a tourmaline crystal:  animation through slices of Madagascar liddicoatite

last updated  16-July-2024