Forsterite (Synthetic) | Gemopedia

Synthetic forsterite (a variety of olivine) is produced by a process called the Czochralski method. Material containing the elements that make up the mineral forsterite (magnesium, silicon, and oxygen) are melted in a platinum crucible. A small forsterite crystal (called a seed) that is attached to a rod is then dipped into the melt and slowly pulled away as the crystal grows around the seed. For this reason, the Czochralski method is also known as crystal pulling. Synthetic gems have the same chemical, optical, and physical properties of their natural counterparts, but are a more cost-effective alternative to a natural gem.
Colors
Violet To Bluish Violet

Forsterite (Synthetic) Classification

Common Name

Forsterite (Synthetic)

Species

Forsterite

Variety

Colors

Violet To Bluish Violet

Alternate Names

Gemstone Groups

Olivine

Key Separations

RI, birefringence and possible pleochroism

Comments

Synthetic forsterite is often sold as a tanzanite simulant.

Forsterite (Synthetic) Optical Properties

Transparency

Transparent

Refractive Index

1.635-1.67

Birefringence

0.034-0.035

Optic Character

Biaxial

Optic Sign

Positive

Polariscope Reaction

Doubly Refractive (DR)

Fluorescence

SWUV: Weak greenish yellow
LWUV: Weak chalky orangy yellow

CCF Reaction

Pleochroism

Dichroic, strong blue and purplish pink

Dispersion

Comments

Forsterite (Synthetic) Chemistry & Crystallography

Chemical Name

magnesium silicate

Chemical Formula

Mg2SiO4

Synthesis

Czochralski pulled

Crystal System

Orthorhombic

Classification

Silicate

Nature

Synthetic

Crystallinity

Crystalline

Comments

Forsterite (Synthetic) Characteristic Physical Properties

Hardness

6.5-7

Streak

White

Specific Gravity

3.23-3.24 Typical:3.23

Toughness

Inclusions

Synthetic forsterite sometimes includes gas bubbles, tiny white specks, minute needles

Luster

Vitreous

Stability

Fracture

Conchoidal

Cleavage

Good, in two directions

Comments

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