Sphene Gemstone Information


 
The rare collector's stone Sphene is a brilliant transparent yellowish-green or green with a high luster and pronounced fire. Sphene's magnificent fire, unique color shades, strong pleochroism, adamantine (diamond-like) luster and double refraction make it ideal for earrings and pendants that catch the light and show its sparkling qualities. Occasionally pink, black or brown, most Sphene is predominantly green or yellowish-green, with colorful flashes of a rainbow of hues. 
 
The name "Sphene" comes from the word meaning wedge shaped, as it normally occurs in wedge shaped crystals. Several gemological characteristics make it beautiful and desirable as a collector's stone or, with care, for jewelry use. Its dispersion (fire) is one of the highest of all gem materials, even higher than diamond. The body color, degree of inclusions, cutting orientation and cutting style may enhance or obscure this feature. If well polished, the luster can approach or equal that of diamond, but the gem is difficult to polish well. The high birefringence usually makes some doubling of facet images visible within the stone giving it a degree of internal fuzziness similar to that often seen in zircon or peridot. A rare variety termed chrome sphene is colored by chromium and is an intense green.
 
The prices and value of Sphene can vary tremendously, depending on the size and quality of the gemstone. AJS Gems is your source for the highest quality Sphene and many other precious colored stones from across the globe, available at Bangkok direct wholesale prices. Creating the finest jewelry starts with finding the best gemstones, and the best gemstones are found at AJS Gems.

 
Why Buy Loose Gemstones Instead of Pre-Set Jewelry?
 
There are many reasons, but mainly it comes down to value and choice...

When buying your Sphene gemstone loose instead of a pre-set stone, you can be sure that you are getting the best value for your money.  Loose gemstones are less expensive, a better value, and you can really see what you are paying for.  The most important part of getting the right price and finding the best value is to first see what you're getting.  A jewelry setting will hide the inclusions inside a gem, and can deepen or brighten its color.  With a loose stone you can much more easily inspect the gem and see it for what it really is.  In this way you can get a better idea of its true worth and be sure you are paying a fair price.

The second advantage of buying a loose gemstone is choice.  You are free to pick the exact color, cut, shape and variety of the stone for the setting of your dreams, be it yellow gold, white gold, platinum or silver; prong set or bezel set with diamond accents.  You can experience the joy of creating your very own, one-of-a-kind jewelry design. Choose from a variety of jewelry settings and styles to create a completely original presentation that will perfectly suit your individual gemstone and will be as unique as you are!
Sphene Ring                                                                    
At AJS Gems, you will find a large collection of fine quality Sphene gemstones at highly competitive prices. These rare gems come mainly from Madagascar and Sri Lanka and are of special interest to collectors for their unusual gemological properties. 
 
 
 

Attributes
 

Origin Madagascar, India, Brazil, USA, Mexico, Canada, Pakistan, Italy, Switzerland, Russia.
Color Greenish yellow, yellow, brown
Refractive Index  1.880 - 2.054
Chemical Composition  CaTiSiO5
Hardness 5 to 5.5
Density 3.50 - 3.54
Crystal Structure Monoclinic

 

 Sphene Crystal                                                                               Sphene Gem

 

Sphene, also known as calcium titanium silicate, forms flattened wedge-shaped crystals, commonly twinned with prominent re-entry angles; massive, compact and lamellar forms are also found. Crystal Habits include elongated wedges that form tabular or platy crystals. Some crystals are not so elongated and can have a trigonal appearance similar to a flattened rhombohedron. Twinning is common and produces a twin that is shaped like a deflatted, caved-in football, only with flatter surfaces.  Most gems have a crystalline structure. Crystals have planes of symmetry and are divided into seven symmetry systems. The number of axes, their length, and their angle to each other determine the system to which a crystal belongs. Sphene gemstones crystallize in the monoclinic crystal system.

Sphene has a specific gravity of 3.50 - 3.54 and a hardness of 5 - 5.5.  Refractive indices of Sphene range around 1.880 - 2.054. The refractive index (RI), measured using a refractometer, is an indication of the amount light rays are bent by a mineral. Birefringence is the difference between the minimum and maximum RI. When birefringence is high, light rays reflect off different parts of the back of a stone causing an apparent doubling of the back facets when viewed through the front facet.



Color
 
Occasionally pink, black or brown, most Sphene is predominantly green or yellowish-green, with colorful flashes of a rainbow of hues. There are yellow, orange, brown or green gems with many gradations between those colors. The usual colors are created by iron and rare-earth element impurities.  A preference exists for stones that are lighter in tone, especially yellows, light oranges and greens which are able to best exhibit this gem's magnificent dispersion.



Cut

Quality of cut is especially important in Sphene gemstones.  If well cut Sphene can have very intense fire and excellent luster.  Although sphene is rather soft, it is always cut as a facetted stone, which suits its lively appearance, rather than a cabochon, which is more normal for stones softer than 7 on Moh's scale.  Sphene can be found in most common gemstone cuts, including rectangular or square cuts, rounds, pears, ovals, emeralds, cushions, and many more.

 

Treatments

There are no known Sphene enhancements, synthetics, or imitations on the market.

AJS Gems fully discloses any and all known treatments to our gemstones.
 

Sources

Sphene occurs as an accessory mineral in igneous rocks; in schists, gneisses and other metamorphic rocks, and is also found as a detrital mineral in some sedimentary deposits. Sphene is found primarily in Madagascar, Mexico, Canada and, historically, in Austria. Fine yellow and green gems come from Baja California in Mexico, and some fine green examples are also mined in Brazil.  Although reasonably available in the marketplace, it is virtually unknown to the general public.
 

Mythology
 
Sphene is an ore of titanium, which has a very high melting point, and is used to make high-speed planes.

Titanium was discovered by the same person who discovered uranium, which was called after Uranus, which is Heaven in Greek mythology. So when he discovered another new element, he decided to call titanium, after the Titans, sons of the Earth.

 

AJS Gems Wholesale Loose Sphene

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