Dolomite – A Useful Mineral...

Dolomite – A Useful Mineral Dolomite is also known as dolostone and dolomite rock.  It is a sedimentary rock which primarily consists of the mineral dolomite. It is found in sedimentary basins worldwide. Dolomite rock is similar to limestone rock. Both dolomite and limestone rocks share the same colour ranges of white-to-gray and white-to-light brown (although other colours such as red, green, and black are also possible). Both the rocks have approximately the same hardness, and they are both soluble in dilute hydrochloric (HCl) acid. The original mineral name ‘dolomie’ was given by NT Saussare, in 1792, in honor of the French geologist Deodat Guy de Dolomieu (1750–1801). Dolomite, the rock, contains a large proportion of dolomite the mineral. Ideal dolomite has a crystal lattice consisting of alternating layers of Ca and Mg, separated by layers of CO3 and is typically represented by a stoichiometric chemical composition of CaMg(CO3)2, where calcium and magnesium are present in equal proportions. Dolomite originates in the same sedimentary environments as limestone i.e. in warm, shallow, marine environments where calcium carbonate (CaCO3) mud accumulates in the form of shell debris, fecal material, coral fragments, and carbonate precipitates. Dolomite is thought to form when the calcite in carbonate mud or limestone is modified by magnesium-rich groundwater. The available magnesium facilitates the conversion of calcite into dolomite. This chemical change is known as dolomitization. Dolomitization can completely alter a limestone into a dolomite, or it can partially alter the rock to form a dolomitic limestone. Dolomite is a complex mineral. It is relatively a soft mineral which can be easily crushed to a soft powder. The mineral is an anhydrous carbonate mineral consisting of a double carbonate of calcium (Ca) and magnesium (Mg). It is chemically represented by CaMg(CO3)2 or CaCO3.MgCO3. It theoretically contains...