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Exploring the Science and Beauty of Sand
Colors in Sand
Many of us think of the color of sand as from the beach we know best. But sand can be found in a rainbow of colors, from white to black to red, pink and green. Specific minerals or biogenic components impart color to sands. Black can be volcanic basalt or obsidian. Green can be olivine or glauconite, pinks and purples can be garnets. Reddish grains can be iron-stained quartz. Clean to white grains can be quartz, marble, or gypsum. “Pink” Bermuda sands are pink from marine foraminifera in the sand. While seemingly mundane on the beach, when magnified— the mineral colors pop.
Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Munis
Sandstone Cliffs, Minehaha Falls, Minnes
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