THE MINERAL ELBAITE


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Elbaite belongs to the group of minerals known as the Tourmalines. It is the most colorful member of this group. Elbaite is often cut as a gemstone, sliced into colorful cross-sections or simply appreciated as natural specimens by millions of rock collectors. The many varied colors of Elbaite make it arguably the most colorful of the precious stones. Elbaite contains many variety names based on color. A beautiful blue variety is called indicolite (also known as indigolite), the pink to red variety is called rubellite, the green variety is known as verdelite, while the most famous variety is a pink and green combination called watermelon tourmaline. Often a specimen can have more than one color zone in the same crystal. These zones can alternate in color from the inside to the outside or from the top to bottom. Elbaite is strongly pleochroic which means that a transparent crystal will appear darker when viewed down the long axis of the crystal. A green or blue Elbaite can appear black when viewed from such an angle.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS:

  • Color is extremely variable with the most common colors being red, pink, green, blue, orange and yellow.
  • Luster is vitreous.
  • Transparency: Crystals are transparent to translucent.
  • Crystal System: Trigonal; 3 m
  • Crystal Habit is typically elongated three, and occasionally six, sided prisms. The terminations can be either a simple to complex trigonal pyramid or flat basal face. The prism faces are striated lengthwise. In cross section, all tourmalines will appear predominantly triangular in shape with some crystals showing a hexagon when three secondary prism faces are nearly as dominant as the three primary prism faces. Doubly terminated crystals are hemimorphic meaning that the two ends of the crystal are not exactly alike. The terminations on a doubly terminated crystal can have different slants to the pyramids on opposite ends. Acicular and massive forms can also be found.
  • Cleavage is absent although there is basal parting.
  • Fracture is uneven to conchoidal.
  • Hardness is 7 - 7.5
  • Specific Gravity is 3.0+ (average)
  • Streak is white.
  • Other Characteristics: Refractive indices = 1.62 and 1.68 .
  • Associated Minerals include those minerals associated with granitic pegmatites and metamorphic rocks such as micas, feldspars, quartz and even other gem minerals such as beryl, garnets, spodumene and topaz.
  • Notable Occurrences include the San Diego, California area; Brazil; Elba, Italy (where Elbaite gets its name); Sri Lanka; Pakistan; Maine, USA and Russia as well as many others.
  • Best Field Indicators are crystal habit, triangular cross-section, color and hardness.
For Tourmaline Jewelry, see --> TOURMALINE JEWELRY

Tourmaline Jewelry - Hover over an item for more information
Round Iolite Sterling Silver Vintage-Inspired Ring with Pink Tourmaline & Amethyst - Venus Band
Scalloped shells form a fluted pattern on each side of this feminine tapered band, carefully handcrafted in your choice of gems and metals.Only $205.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Iolite Sterling Silver Vintage-Inspired Ring with Pink Tourmaline & Amethyst - Venus Band
$205.00
Gemvara
14K Rose Gold Bracelet with Green Tourmaline - Gemstones By The Yard Cross Bracelet
A layerable essential, handcrafted in your choice of gems and metals, featuring a cross in pave-set gemstones. Adjustable 7-7.5 chain."Only $485.00 at Gemvara
no photo14K Rose Gold Bracelet with Green Tourmaline - Gemstones By The Yard Cross Bracelet
$485.00
Gemvara
Sterling Silver CZ, Multi-Color Tourmaline Pendant
Handmade by Master Artisan. See more details at JeGem.com.Only $150.74 at JeGem.com
no photoSterling Silver CZ, Multi-Color Tourmaline Pendant
$150.74
JeGem.com
Round Green Tourmaline Sterling Silver Promise Ring - Simply Round Solitaire
Less is more in this sleek solitaire ring with round brilliant-cut center. Delicate, feminine and simply stylish, this ring is perfect worn alone or stacked. Different stone sizes and band widths are available.Only $225.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Green Tourmaline Sterling Silver Promise Ring - Simply Round Solitaire
$225.00
Gemvara
Large Black Tourmaline Bib Necklace - Kendra Scott Luxe - Black (LARGE )
Kendra Scott LuxeLarge Black Tourmaline Bib NecklaceDetails18-karat yellow gold-plated brass.7 black tourmaline oval facets shape bib.Pave cubic zirconia.Serpentine chain necklace.Fold-over clasp.18 1/2inL.Please note: Due to the unique nature of the...Only $550.00 at Neiman Marcus
no photoLarge Black Tourmaline Bib Necklace - Kendra Scott Luxe - Black (LARGE )
$550.00
Neiman Marcus
Sterling Silver Mother's Ring with Pink Tourmaline - Star Flower Ring
This sweet ring blooms with a star-shaped flower on a curved vine that twines around the finger.Only $220.00 at Gemvara
no photoSterling Silver Mother's Ring with Pink Tourmaline - Star Flower Ring
$220.00
Gemvara
Round Pink Tourmaline Sterling Silver Mother's Ring with Emerald & Peridot - Liana Ring with Three Gems
This lovely leafy vine ring twines across the finger while brilliant gems bloom among the leaves.Only $225.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Pink Tourmaline Sterling Silver Mother's Ring with Emerald & Peridot - Liana Ring with Three Gems
$225.00
Gemvara
Round Blue Topaz Sterling Silver Engagement Ring with Blue Topaz & Green Tourmaline - Mackenzie Ring
With a wide band covered in brilliant gem pave, this ring stops traffic. Modern drama to wear, this design is for the diva in all of us.Only $870.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Blue Topaz Sterling Silver Engagement Ring with Blue Topaz & Green Tourmaline - Mackenzie Ring
$870.00
Gemvara
Opal, 2.50ct t.w. Pink Tourmaline Earrings, White Topaz Over Sterling
Dreamy and feminine, these earrings host oval opals wrapped by 2.50 ct. t.w. round pink tourmalines and 1.00 ct. t.w. round white topaz. Post/clutch, 14kt rose gold over sterling silver earrings. Opal birthstones are the perfect gift for October...Only $187.50 at Ross-Simons
no photoOpal, 2.50ct t.w. Pink Tourmaline Earrings, White Topaz Over Sterling
$187.50
Ross-Simons
Round Pink Tourmaline Sterling Silver Vintage-Inspired Ring with Rock Crystal - Venus Band
Scalloped shells form a fluted pattern on each side of this feminine tapered band, carefully handcrafted in your choice of gems and metals.Only $200.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Pink Tourmaline Sterling Silver Vintage-Inspired Ring with Rock Crystal - Venus Band
$200.00
Gemvara
Round Green Tourmaline Sterling Silver Necklace - Evil Eye Pendant
Luck will be on your side with this stylish evil eye pendant that wards off misfortune.Only $205.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Green Tourmaline Sterling Silver Necklace - Evil Eye Pendant
$205.00
Gemvara
Round Aquamarine Sterling Silver Vintage-Inspired Ring with Amethyst & Pink Tourmaline - Venus Band
Scalloped shells form a fluted pattern on each side of this feminine tapered band, carefully handcrafted in your choice of gems and metals.Only $205.00 at Gemvara
no photoRound Aquamarine Sterling Silver Vintage-Inspired Ring with Amethyst & Pink Tourmaline - Venus Band
$205.00
Gemvara
Sterling Silver Necklace with Pink Tourmaline - Love Letters 'E' Pendant With Gem
You choose the lowercase letter below and the meaning behind it. Artisans handcraft the precious metal of your choice in a single flowing line, and accent the design with your favorite gem. The chain threads directly through the letter.Only $135.00 at Gemvara
no photoSterling Silver Necklace with Pink Tourmaline - Love Letters 'E' Pendant With Gem
$135.00
Gemvara
Sterling Silver Necklace with Pink Tourmaline - Musical Note Pendant
For music lovers who also love style, this sculptural note is inspired by hand-written scores. A gem adds a personal touch of brilliance.Only $140.00 at Gemvara
no photoSterling Silver Necklace with Pink Tourmaline - Musical Note Pendant
$140.00
Gemvara
Sterling Silver Promise Ring with Green Tourmaline & Pink Tourmaline - Double Knots Ring
This gorgeous, contemporary setting forms a pair of knots, each enclosing a stunning, 3mm, prong-set stone. It's carefully handcrafted in your choice of gems and metals.Only $185.00 at Gemvara
no photoSterling Silver Promise Ring with Green Tourmaline & Pink Tourmaline - Double Knots Ring
$185.00
Gemvara

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Available ELBAITE specimens:
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