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Also known as Mount St. Helens stone, helenite is a man-made stone that originates from the ashes of the Washington State Mount St. Helens eruption in 1980. While the volcanic ash was being removed, it was discovered that it contained glass particles that turned a beautiful green color when heated. This glass is commonly made and fashioned into jewels that may be green, red or blue.

Helenite Polished
Helenite Classification
Common Name Helenite
Species Glass
Helenite Optical Properties
Transparency Transparent - Translucent
Refractive Index 1.490
Optic Character NA
Optic Sign NA
Polariscope Reaction Singly Refractive (SR) With ADR
Pleochroism None
Helenite Characteristic Physical Properties
Hardness 5-5.5
Specific Gravity 2.320-2.400 Typical:2.360
Toughness Varies
Inclusions Helenite might have air bubbles.
Luster Vitreous
Fracture Conchoidal
Cleavage None
Helenite Chemistry & Crystallography
Chemical Name silica
Crystal System NA

Helenite Colors

  • Red Helenite Red
  • Green Helenite Green
  • Blue Helenite Blue

Alternate Names

Mount St. Helens Obsidian, Emerald Obsidianite(TM) And Ruby Obsidianite(TM)

Countries of Origin

United States of America (the)


Normal Care

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Tim Matthews


Tim Matthews

Tim Matthews is President and Chief Executive Officer of Jewelry Television® (JTV), as well as a member of the company's Board of Directors. He oversees and leads all aspects of the company's powerful omni-digital retail platform that uniquely specializes in fine jewelry and gemstones. His passion for business and gemstones has led him to become a recognized expert in the field of gemology. He is a life member of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain (Gem-A) and has earned Gem-A's highest degrees, the Gemmology (FGA) and Diamond (DGA) diplomas. He is also a Graduate Gemologist (GG) of the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) and has also completed GIA's Graduate Diplomas in Diamonds, Colored Stones and Pearls. Under his leadership, JTV has become the leader in the sourcing and selling of color gemstones and jewelry.

This page was created on June 27, 2014.

This page was last edited on October 24, 2019.