Biotite is a common phyllosilicate mineral within the mica group, with the approximate chemical formula K(Mg,Fe)
. More generally, it refers to the dark mica series, primarily a solid-solution series between the iron-endmember annite, and the magnesium-endmember phlogopite; more aluminous end-members include siderophyllite. Biotite was named by J.F.L. Hausmann in 1847 in honor of the French physicist Jean-Baptiste Biot, who performed early research into the many optical properties of mica.[4]

Biotite is a sheet silicate. Iron, magnesium, aluminium, silicon, oxygen, and hydrogen form sheets that are weakly bound together by potassium ions. It is sometimes called "iron mica" because it is more iron-rich than phlogopite. It is also sometimes called "black mica" as opposed to "white mica" (muscovite) – both form in the same rocks, and in some instances side-by-side.

Biotite aggregate - Ochtendung, Eifel, Germany
Thin tabular biotite aggregate
(Image width: 2.5 mm)
CategoryDark mica series
(repeating unit)
Crystal systemMonoclinic
Crystal classPrismatic (2/m)
(same H-M symbol)
Space groupC2/m
ColorDark brown, greenish-brown, blackish-brown, yellow, white
Crystal habitMassive to platy
TwinningCommon on the [310],
less common on the {001}
CleavagePerfect on the {001}
TenacityBrittle to flexible, elastic
Mohs scale hardness2.5–3.0
LusterVitreous to pearly
DiaphaneityTransparent to translucent to opaque
Specific gravity2.7–3.3[1]
Optical propertiesBiaxial (-)
Refractive indexnα = 1.565–1.625
nβ = 1.605–1.675
nγ = 1.605–1.675
Birefringenceδ = 0.03–0.07
Dispersionr < v (Fe rich);
r > v weak (Mg rich)
Ultraviolet fluorescenceNone
Sheet mica, Namibia
Glimmerite from Namibia


Like other mica minerals, biotite has a highly perfect basal cleavage, and consists of flexible sheets, or lamellae, which easily flake off. It has a monoclinic crystal system, with tabular to prismatic crystals with an obvious pinacoid termination. It has four prism faces and two pinacoid faces to form a pseudohexagonal crystal. Although not easily seen because of the cleavage and sheets, fracture is uneven. It appears greenish to brown or black, and even yellow when weathered. It can be transparent to opaque, has a vitreous to pearly luster, and a grey-white streak. When biotite is found in large chunks, they are called "books" because it resembles a book with pages of many sheets. The color of biotite is usually black and the mineral has a hardness of 2.5–3 on the Mohs scale of mineral hardness.

Biotite dissolves in both acid and alkaline aqueous solutions, with the highest dissolution rates at low pH.[5] However, biotite dissolution is highly anisotropic with crystal edge surfaces (h k0) reacting 45 to 132 times faster than basal surfaces (001).[6][7]

Under cross-polarized light biotite can generally be identified by the gnarled bird's eye extinction.


Biotite is found in a wide variety of igneous and metamorphic rocks. For instance, biotite occurs in the lava of Mount Vesuvius and in the Monzoni intrusive complex of the western Dolomites. Biotite in granite tends to be poorer in magnesium than the biotite found in its volcanic equivalent, rhyolite.[8] Biotite is an essential phenocryst in some varieties of lamprophyre. Biotite is occasionally found in large cleavable crystals, especially in pegmatite veins, as in New England, Virginia and North Carolina USA. Other notable occurrences include Bancroft and Sudbury, Ontario Canada. It is an essential constituent of many metamorphic schists, and it forms in suitable compositions over a wide range of pressure and temperature. It has been estimated that biotite comprises up to 7% of the exposed continental crust.[9]

The largest documented single crystals of biotite were approximately 7 m2 (75 sq ft) sheets found in Iveland, Norway.[10]


Glimmerite is an igneous rock composed mostly of dark mica (usually biotite, but also phlogopite).


Meroxene variety of biotite from Monte Somma, Italy

Biotite is used extensively to constrain ages of rocks, by either potassium-argon dating or argon–argon dating. Because argon escapes readily from the biotite crystal structure at high temperatures, these methods may provide only minimum ages for many rocks. Biotite is also useful in assessing temperature histories of metamorphic rocks, because the partitioning of iron and magnesium between biotite and garnet is sensitive to temperature.


  1. ^ a b Handbook of Mineralogy
  2. ^ Biotite mineral information and data Mindat
  3. ^ Biotite Mineral Data Webmineral
  4. ^ Johann Friedrich Ludwig Hausmann (1828). Handbuch der Mineralogie. Vandenhoeck und Ruprecht. p. 674. "Zur Bezeichnung des sogenannten einachsigen Glimmers ist hier der Name Biotit gewählt worden, um daran zu erinnern, daß Biot es war, der zuerst auf die optische Verschiedenheit der Glimmerarten aufmerksam machte." (For the designation of so-called uniaxial mica, the name "biotite" has been chosen in order to recall that it was Biot who first called attention to the optical differences between types of mica.)
  5. ^ Malmström, Maria; Banwart, Steven (July 1997). "Biotite dissolution at 25°C: The pH dependence of dissolution rate and stoichiometry". Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta. 61 (14): 2779–2799. doi:10.1016/S0016-7037(97)00093-8.
  6. ^ Hodson, Mark E. (April 2006). "Does reactive surface area depend on grain size? Results from pH 3, 25°C far-from-equilibrium flow-through dissolution experiments on anorthite and biotite". Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta. 70 (7): 1655–1667. doi:10.1016/j.gca.2006.01.001.
  7. ^ Bray, Andrew W.; Oelkers, Eric H.; Bonneville, Steeve; Wolff-Boenisch, Domenik; Potts, Nicola J.; Fones, Gary; Benning, Liane G. (September 2015). "The effect of pH, grain size, and organic ligands on biotite weathering rates". Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta. 164: 127–145. doi:10.1016/j.gca.2015.04.048.
  8. ^ Carmichael, I.S.; Turner, F.J.; Verhoogen, J. (1974). Igneous Petrology. New York: McGraw-Hill. p. 250. ISBN 0-07-009987-1.
  9. ^ Nesbitt, H.W; Young, G.M (July 1984). "Prediction of some weathering trends of plutonic and volcanic rocks based on thermodynamic and kinetic considerations". Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta. 48 (7): 1523–1534. doi:10.1016/0016-7037(84)90408-3.
  10. ^ P. C. Rickwood (1981). "The largest crystals" (PDF). American Mineralogist. 66: 885–907.

For the extinct cephalopod genus, see Andesites.

Andesite ( or ) is an extrusive igneous, volcanic rock, of intermediate composition, with aphanitic to porphyritic texture. In a general sense, it is the intermediate type between basalt and rhyolite, and ranges from 57 to 63% silicon dioxide (SiO2) as illustrated in TAS diagrams. The mineral assemblage is typically dominated by plagioclase plus pyroxene or hornblende. Magnetite, zircon, apatite, ilmenite, biotite, and garnet are common accessory minerals. Alkali feldspar may be present in minor amounts. The quartz-feldspar abundances in andesite and other volcanic rocks are illustrated in QAPF diagrams.

Classification of andesites may be refined according to the most abundant phenocryst. Example: hornblende-phyric andesite, if hornblende is the principal accessory mineral.

Andesite can be considered as the extrusive equivalent of plutonic diorite. Characteristic of subduction zones, andesite represents the dominant rock type in island arcs. The average composition of the continental crust is andesitic. Along with basalts they are a major component of the Martian crust. The name andesite is derived from the Andes mountain range.

Geology of Macau

The geology of Macau includes rocks from the Paleoproterozoic and Mesozoic belonging to the Yangtze terrane and Cathaysia terrane, which joined to the form the basement rock of southern China. The Yuao-Macao Fault Zone was identified in 1992 as a component of the broader South China Fold Belt, together with the Jiangshan-Shaoxing Fault Zone.

I-type granite intrusion took place in the region around 160 million years ago in the Mesozoic. As a result, the rock in Macau is dominantly granite with veins and dikes of dacite, basalt and aplite. Geologists distinguish different granite facies between Coloane, Taipa and the Macau Peninsula. Other rock groups include porphyritic biotite granite, non-porphyritic garnet-bearing biotite granites and smaller occurrences of granite without biotite. Isotopic data suggests origins melting of Proterozoic protoliths, with small amounts of mantle-derived magma added to the mix.


Gneiss () is a common and widely distributed type of metamorphic rock. Gneiss is formed by high temperature and high-pressure metamorphic processes acting on formations composed of igneous or sedimentary rocks. Orthogneiss is gneiss derived from igneous rock (such as granite). Paragneiss is gneiss derived from sedimentary rock (such as sandstone). Gneiss forms at higher temperatures and pressures than schist. Gneiss nearly all the time shows a banded texture characterized by alternating darker and lighter colored bands and without a distinct foliation.


Granite ( ) is a common type of felsic intrusive igneous rock that is granular and phaneritic in texture. Granites can be predominantly white, pink, or gray in color, depending on their mineralogy. The word "granite" comes from the Latin granum, a grain, in reference to the coarse-grained structure of such a holocrystalline rock. Strictly speaking, granite is an igneous rock with between 20% and 60% quartz by volume, and at least 35% of the total feldspar consisting of alkali feldspar, although commonly the term "granite" is used to refer to a wider range of coarse-grained igneous rocks containing quartz and feldspar.

The term "granitic" means granite-like and is applied to granite and a group of intrusive igneous rocks with similar textures and slight variations in composition and origin. These rocks mainly consist of feldspar, quartz, mica, and amphibole minerals, which form an interlocking, somewhat equigranular matrix of feldspar and quartz with scattered darker biotite mica and amphibole (often hornblende) peppering the lighter color minerals. Occasionally some individual crystals (phenocrysts) are larger than the groundmass, in which case the texture is known as porphyritic. A granitic rock with a porphyritic texture is known as a granite porphyry. Granitoid is a general, descriptive field term for lighter-colored, coarse-grained igneous rocks. Petrographic examination is required for identification of specific types of granitoids. The extrusive igneous rock equivalent of granite is rhyolite.

Granite is nearly always massive (i.e., lacking any internal structures), hard, and tough. These properties have made granite a widespread construction stone throughout human history. The average density of granite is between 2.65 and 2.75 g/cm3 (165 and 172 lb/cu ft), its compressive strength usually lies above 200 MPa, and its viscosity near STP is 3–6·1019 Pa·s.The melting temperature of dry granite at ambient pressure is 1215–1260 °C (2219–2300 °F); it is strongly reduced in the presence of water, down to 650 °C at a few kBar pressure.Granite has poor primary permeability overall, but strong secondary permeability through cracks and fractures if they are present.


Granodiorite ( ) is a phaneritic-textured intrusive igneous rock similar to granite, but containing more plagioclase feldspar than orthoclase feldspar. According to the QAPF diagram, granodiorite has a greater than 20% quartz by volume, and between 65% to 90% of the feldspar is plagioclase. A greater amount of plagioclase would designate the rock as tonalite.

Granodiorite is felsic to intermediate in composition. It is the intrusive igneous equivalent of the extrusive igneous dacite. It contains a large amount of sodium (Na) and calcium (Ca) rich plagioclase, potassium feldspar, quartz, and minor amounts of muscovite mica as the lighter colored mineral components. Biotite and amphiboles often in the form of hornblende are more abundant in granodiorite than in granite, giving it a more distinct two-toned or overall darker appearance. Mica may be present in well-formed hexagonal crystals, and hornblende may appear as needle-like crystals. Minor amounts of oxide minerals such as magnetite, ilmenite, and ulvöspinel, as well as some sulfide minerals may also be present.


Hornfels (German, meaning "hornstone") is called so because of its exceptional toughness and texture both reminiscent of animal horns. These properties are due to fine grained non-aligned crystals with platy or prismatic habits. Hornfels is the group designation for a series of contact metamorphic rocks that have been baked and indurated by the heat of intrusive igneous masses and have been rendered massive, hard, splintery, and in some cases exceedingly tough and durable. Hornfels rocks were referred to by miners in northern England as whetstones.Most hornfels are fine-grained, and while the original rocks (such as sandstone, shale, slate, limestone and diabase) may have been more or less fissile owing to the presence of bedding or cleavage planes, this structure is effaced or rendered inoperative in the hornfels. Though they may show banding, due to bedding, etc., they break across this as readily as along it; in fact, they tend to separate into cubical fragments rather than into thin plates.

The most common hornfels (the biotite hornfels) are dark-brown to black with a somewhat velvety luster owing to the abundance of small crystals of shining black mica. The lime hornfels are often white, yellow, pale-green, brown and other colors. Green and dark-green are the prevalent tints of the hornfels produced by the alteration of igneous rocks. Although for the most part the constituent grains are too small to be determined by the unaided eye, there are often larger crystals of cordierite, garnet or andalusite scattered through the fine matrix, and these may become very prominent on the weathered faces of the rock.


Latite is an igneous, volcanic rock, with aphanitic-aphyric to aphyric-porphyritic texture. Its mineral assemblage is usually alkali feldspar and plagioclase in approximately equal amounts. Quartz is less than five percent and is absent in a feldspathoid-bearing latite, and olivine is absent in a quartz-bearing latite. When quartz content is greater than five percent the rock is classified as quartz latite. Biotite, hornblende, pyroxene and scarce olivine or quartz are common accessory minerals.

Rhomb porphyries are an unusual variety with gray-white porphyritic rhomb shaped phenocrysts embedded in a very fine grained red-brown matrix. The composition of rhomb porphyry places it in the trachyte - latite classification of the QAPF diagram.

Latite is found, for example, as lavas in Bulgaria and as intrusive laccoliths and sills in South Dakota, USA.


Leucitite or leucite rock is an igneous rock containing leucite. It is scarce, many countries such as England being entirely without them. However, they are of wide distribution, occurring in every quarter of the globe. Taken collectively, they exhibit a considerable variety of types and are of great interest petrographically. For the presence of this mineral it is necessary that the silica percentage of the rock should be low, since leucite is incompatible with free quartz and reacts with it to form potassium feldspar. Because it weathers rapidly, leucite is most common in lavas of recent and Tertiary age, which have a fair amount of potassium, or at any rate have potassium equal to or greater than sodium; if sodium is abundant nepheline occurs rather than leucite.

In pre-Tertiary rocks leucite readily decomposes and changes to zeolites, analcite and other secondary minerals. Leucite also is rare in plutonic rocks and dike rocks, but leucite syenite and leucite tinguaite bear witness to the possibility that it may occur in this manner. The rounded shape of its crystals, their white or grey color, and absence of planar cleavage make the presence of leucite easily determinable in many of these rocks by inspection, especially when the crystals are large.

"Pseudoleucites" are rounded areas consisting of feldspar, nepheline, analcite, &c., which have the shape, composition and sometimes even the outward crystalline shape of leucite; they are probably pseudomorphs or paramorphs, which have developed from leucite because this mineral is not stable at ordinary temperatures and can be expected under favorable conditions to undergo spontaneous change into an aggregate of other minerals. Leucite is very often accompanied by nepheline, sodalite or nosean; other minerals which make their appearance with some frequency are melanite, garnet and melilite.

The plutonic leucite-bearing rocks are leucite syenite and missourite. Of these the former consists of orthoclase, nepheline, sodalite, diopside and aegirine, biotite and sphene. Two occurrences are known, one in Arkansas, the other in Sutherland, Scotland. The Scottish rock has been called borolanite. Both examples show large rounded spots in the hand specimens; they are pseudoleucites, and under the microscope prove to consist of orthoclase, nepheline, sodalite and decomposition products. These have a radiate arrangement externally, but are of irregular structure at their centres; in both rocks melanite is an important accessory. The missourites are more mafic and consist of leucite, olivine, augite and biotite; the leucite is partly fresh partly altered to analcite, and the rock has a spotted character recalling that of the leucite-syenites. It has been found only in the Highwood Mountains of Montana.

The leucite-hearing dike-rocks are members of the tinguaite and monchiquite groups. The leucite tinguaites are usually pale grey or greenish in color and consist principally of nepheline, alkali feldspar and aegirine. The latter forms bright green moss-like patches and growths of indefinite shape, or in other cases scattered acicular prisms, among the feldspars and nephelines of the ground mass. Where leucite occurs, it is always euhedral in small, equant, many-sided crystals in the ground mass, or in larger masses which have the same characters as the pseudoleucites. Biotite occurs in some of these rocks, and melanite also is present. Nepheline decreases in amount as leucite increases since the abundances of the two reflect the Na:K ratio of the rock. Rocks of this group are known from Rio de Janeiro, Arkansas, Kola Peninsula (in Russia), Montana and a few other places., In Greenland there are leucite tinguaites with much arfvedsonite, (hornblende) and eudialyte. Wherever they occur they accompany leucite- and nepheline syenites. Leucite monchiquites are fine-grained dark rocks consisting of olivine, titaniferous augite and iron oxides, with a glassy ground mass in which small rounded crystals of leucite are scattered. They have been described from Czechoslovakia.

By far the greater number of the rocks which contain leucite are lavas of Tertiary or recent geological age. Although these never contain quartz, but feldspar is usually present, though there are certain groups of leucite lavas which are non-feldspathic. Many of them also contain nepheline, sodalite, hauyne and nosean; the much rarer mineral melilite appears also in some examples. The commonest ferromagnesian mineral is augite (sometimes rich in sodium), with olivine in the more basic varieties. Hornblende and biotite occur also, but are less common. Melanite is found in some of the lavas, as in the leucite syenites.

The rocks in which orthoclase (or sanidine) is present in considerable amount are leucite-trachytes, leucite-phonolites and leucitophvres. Of these groups the two former, which are not sharply distinguished from one another by most authors, are common in the neighborhood of Rome. They are of trachytic appearance, containing phenocysts of sanidine, leucite, augite and biotite. Sodalite or hauyne may also be present, but nepheline is typically absent. Rocks of this class occur also in the tuffs of the Phlegraean Fields, near Naples. The leucitophyres are rare rocks which have been described from various parts of the volcanic district of the Rhine (Olbrck. Laacher See, etc.) and from Monte Vulture in Italy. They are rich in leucite, but contain also some sanidine and often much nepheline with hauyne or nosean. Their pyroxene is principally aegirine or aegirine-augite; some of them are rich in melanite. Microscopic sections of some of these rocks are of great interest on account of their beauty and the variety of feldspathoid minerals which they contain. In Brazil leucitophyres have been found which belong to the Carboniferous period.

Those leucite rocks which contain abundant essential plagioclase feldspar are known as leucite tephrites and leucite basanites. The former consist mainly of plagioclase, leucite and augite, while the latter contain olivine in addition. The leucite is often present in two sets of crystals, both porphyritic and as an ingredient of the ground mass. It is always idiomorphic with rounded outlines. The feldspar ranges from bytownite to oligoclase, being usually a variety of labradorite; orthoclase is scarce. The augite varies a good deal in chemnistry and optical character, being green, brown or violet (suggesting high Na and Ti content), but it is rarely high enough in Na and Fe to qualify as aegirine-augite or aegirine. Among the accessory minerals biotite, brown hornblende, hauyne, iron oxides and apatite are the commonest; melanite and nepheline may also occur. The ground mass of these rocks is only occasionally rich in glass. The leucite-tephrites and leucite-basanites of Vesuvius and Somma are familiar examples of this class of rocks. They are black or ashy-grey in color, often vesicular, and may contain many large grey phenocysts of leucite. Their black augite and yellow green olivine are also easily observed in hand specimens. From Volcan Ello, Sardinia and Roccamonfina similar rocks are obtained; they occur also in Bohemia, in Java, Celebes, Kilimanjaro (Africa) and near Trebizond in Asia Minor.

Leucite lavas from which feldspar is absent are divided into the leucitites and leucite basalts. The latter contain olivine, the former do not. Pyroxene is the usual ferromagnesian mineral, and resembles that of the tephrites and basanites. Sanidine, melanite, hauyne and perovskite are frequent accessory minerals in these rocks, and many of them contain melilite in some quantity, The well-known leucitite of the Capo di Bove, near, Rome, is rich in this mineral, which forms irregular plates, yellow in the hand specimen, enclosing many small rounded crystals of leucite. Bracciano and Roccamonfina are other Italian localities for leucitite, and in Java, Montana, Celebes and New South Wales similar rocks occur, The leucite basalts belong to more basic types and are rich in olivine and augite. They occur in great numbers in the Rhenish volcanic district (Eifel, Laacher See) and in Bohemia, and accompany tephrites or leucitites in Java, Montana, Celebes and Sardinia. The peperino of the neighborhood of Rome is a leucitite tuff.


Mafic is an adjective describing a silicate mineral or igneous rock that is rich in magnesium and iron, and is thus a portmanteau of magnesium and ferric. Most mafic minerals are dark in color, and common rock-forming mafic minerals include olivine, pyroxene, amphibole, and biotite. Common mafic rocks include basalt, diabase and gabbro. Mafic rocks often also contain calcium-rich varieties of plagioclase feldspar.

Chemically, mafic rocks are enriched in iron, magnesium and calcium and typically dark in color. In contrast the felsic rocks are typically light in color and enriched in aluminium and silicon along with potassium and sodium. The mafic rocks also typically have a higher density than felsic rocks. The term roughly corresponds to the older basic rock class.

Mafic lava, before cooling, has a low viscosity, in comparison with felsic lava, due to the lower silica content in mafic magma. Water and other volatiles can more easily and gradually escape from mafic lava. As a result, eruptions of volcanoes made of mafic lavas are less explosively violent than felsic-lava eruptions. Most mafic-lava volcanoes are shield volcanoes, like those in Hawaii.

Metamorphic facies

A metamorphic facies is a set of mineral assemblages in metamorphic rocks formed under similar pressures and temperatures. The assemblage is typical of what is formed in conditions corresponding to an area on the two dimensional graph of temperature vs. pressure (See diagram in Figure 1). Rocks which contain certain minerals can therefore be linked to certain tectonic settings, times and places in the geological history of the area. The boundaries between facies (and corresponding areas on the temperature v. pressure graph) are wide because they are gradational and approximate. The area on the graph corresponding to rock formation at the lowest values of temperature and pressure is the range of formation of sedimentary rocks, as opposed to metamorphic rocks, in a process called diagenesis.


Monzogranites are biotite granite rocks that are considered to be the final fractionation product of magma. Monzogranites are characteristically felsic (SiO2 > 73%, and FeO + MgO + TiO2 < 2.4), weakly peraluminous (Al2O3/ (CaO + Na2O + K2O) = 0.98–1.11), and contain ilmenite, sphene, apatite and zircon as accessory minerals. Although the compositional range of the monzogranites is small, it defines a differentiation trend that is essentially controlled by biotite and plagioclase fractionation. (Fagiono, 2002). Monzogranites can be divided into two groups (magnesio-potassic monzogranite and ferro-potassic monzogranite) and are further categorized into rock types based on their macroscopic characteristics, melt characteristics, specific features, available isotopic data, and the locality in which they are found.


Phlogopite is a yellow, greenish, or reddish-brown member of the mica family of phyllosilicates. It is also known as magnesium mica.

Phlogopite is the magnesium endmember of the biotite solid solution series, with the chemical formula KMg3AlSi3O10(F,OH)2. Iron substitutes for magnesium in variable amounts leading to the more common biotite with higher iron content. For physical and optical identification, it shares most of the characteristic properties of biotite.

Quartz diorite

Quartz diorite is an igneous, plutonic (intrusive) rock, of felsic composition, with phaneritic texture. Feldspar is present as plagioclase (typically oligoclase or andesine) with 10% or less potassium feldspar. Quartz is present at between 5 and 20% of the rock. Biotite, amphiboles and pyroxenes are common dark accessory minerals.


Rhyodacite is an extrusive volcanic rock intermediate in composition between dacite and rhyolite. It is the extrusive equivalent of granodiorite. Phenocrysts of sodium-rich plagioclase, sanidine, quartz, and biotite or hornblende are typically set in an aphanitic to glassy light to intermediate-colored matrix.

Rhyodacite is a high silica rock containing 20% to 60% quartz with the remaining constituents being mostly feldspar. The feldspar is a mix of alkaline feldspar and plagioclase, with plagioclase forming 35% to 65% of the mix.

Rhyodacite often exists as explosive pyroclastic volcanic deposits.

Rhyodacite lava flows occur, for example, in northwestern Ferry County (Washington), and at An Sgùrr on the island of Eigg in Scotland.


Rhyolite is an igneous, volcanic rock, of felsic (silica-rich) composition (typically > 69% SiO2 – see the TAS classification). It may have any texture from glassy to aphanitic to porphyritic. The mineral assemblage is usually quartz, sanidine and plagioclase (in a ratio > 2:1 – see the QAPF diagram). Biotite and hornblende are common accessory minerals. It is the extrusive equivalent to granite.


Siliciclastic rocks (commonly misspelled siliclastic) are clastic noncarbonate sedimentary rocks that are almost exclusively silica-bearing, either as forms of quartz or other silicate minerals. All siliciclastic rocks are formed by inorganic processes, or deposited through some mechanical process, such as stream deposits (delta deposits) that are subsequently lithified. They are sandstone based rocks accounting for about 50 - 60% of the world oil and gas exploration.The other silicate minerals that are generally present in siliciclastic sedimentary rocks are feldspar, biotite

etc....siliciclastic sediments are silica-based sediments, lacking carbon compounds, which are formed from pre-existing rocks, by breakage, transportation and redeposition to form sedimentary rock.


Tonalite is an igneous, plutonic (intrusive) rock, of felsic composition, with phaneritic texture. Feldspar is present as plagioclase (typically oligoclase or andesine) with 10% or less alkali feldspar. Quartz is present as more than 20% of the rock. Amphiboles and pyroxenes are common accessory minerals.

In older references tonalite is sometimes used as a synonym for quartz diorite. However the current IUGS classification defines tonalite as having greater than 20% quartz, while quartz diorite varies its quartz content from 5 to 20%.

The name is derived from the type locality of tonalites, adjacent to the Tonale Line, a major structural lineament and mountain pass, Tonale Pass, in the Italian and Austrian Alps.

Trondhjemite is an orthoclase-deficient variety of tonalite with minor biotite as the only mafic mineral, named after Norway's third largest city, Trondheim.


Trachyandesite is an extrusive igneous rock with a composition between trachyte and andesite. It has little or no free quartz, but is dominated by alkali feldspar and sodic plagioclase along with one or more of the following mafic minerals: amphibole, biotite or pyroxene. Small amounts of nepheline may be present and apatite is a common accessory mineral. Trachyandestine is often affiliated with the German word "Schadenfreude" for its chemical properties.

Trachyandesitic magma can produce explosive Plinian eruptions, such as happened at Tambora in 1815.


Trachyte is an igneous volcanic rock with an aphanitic to porphyritic texture. It is the volcanic equivalent of syenite. The mineral assemblage consists of essential alkali feldspar; relatively minor plagioclase and quartz or a feldspathoid such as nepheline may also be present. (See the QAPF diagram). Biotite, clinopyroxene and olivine are common accessory minerals.

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