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What is the difference between Elite Shungite and Colombian Shungite or Raquirite?

Shungite from Colombia
The so-called huge sample of shungite from Colombia, which is actually unknown solid hydrocarbon or anthracite.

If you are interested in the question of what is the difference between Shungite and Colombian shungite, then the answer will surprise you. In fact, Colombian shungite does not exist in nature. Because Colombian shungite is fictitious, just like its second name is Raquerite. This alleged shungite from Colombia was invented in order to sell under his name a shungite fake.

The author of the article speaks Russian, but speaks a little English. The help of an online translator was used to translate the article. The author of the article apologizes to his readers for possible grammatical and lexical errors in this article.

Fake shungite from Colombia.

Where is the real elite shungite deposit located?

Our real shungite store comes from Karelia. We are the natives of this land and we know firsthand about the treasures of Karelia, these include the legendary elite or noble shungite. This is a very rare mineral, which is more than 2 billion years old, and the age of the planet Earth is about 4.54 billion years. The origin of elite shungite is still a mystery. And only in this mineral scientists have found unique C60 fullerene molecules.

The only reliably known deposit of elite shungite in Karelia is currently practically empty, but hardworking people can find small veins of elite shungite. But there are very, very few of them, these are rare finds that are given at a high price. And finding some big nuggets is almost impossible.

Therefore, when we were informed that samples of some supposedly elite shungite from Colombia appeared on the network, which, moreover, they were usually gigantic in size, we were very surprised.

For this reason, we conducted a large study in order to understand where this term “elite shungite” or Raquerite came from. And as a result, we realized that, those who write that they found elite shungite in Colombia, they are telling lies. After all, there are no shungite deposits in Colombia. In Colombia, you can find gilsonite and anthracite, which are similar to shungite only in appearance.

That’s why, here we will talk in detail about how we tried to understand what is hidden under the name “elite shungite from Colombia”. And most importantly, we will show you how to distinguish shungite fake from real elite shungite.

After all, in fact the Elite shungite from Colombia is fiction and falsification, speculation on the glory of the rare mineral shungite from Karelia.

The facts that we have on hand.

We assume that under the brand name Colombian elite shungite they sell something that outwardly looks like shungite, but in fact it is not. Maybe it is some kind of solid hydrocarbon, similar to gilsonite, or anthracite coal. We will try to find out what kind of sample it is and consider all options.

We will consider all the properties of gilsonite, anthracite and possibly other supposed minerals and compare them with real elite shungite. Let’s start with Gilsonite.

Gilsonite is a natural asphaltene, a solid hydrocarbon, a product of oil oxidation. Gilsonite looks very similar to elite shungite from Karelia, Russia. But the similarities end there. It does not conduct electricity and does not have the unique properties that real shungite has. Gilsonite is by no means an elite shungite. They belong to completely different genetic classes.

And calling Gilsonite shungite is the same as calling pyrite or copper gold. Or call silver platinum. After all, they are all metals and are very similar to each other in appearance. This is where the similarities end. And we have done a great overview of their differences for you here in this article.

Where can you find something that looks so much like elite shungite in appearance?

Gilsonite deposits amount to billions of tons in different countries, primarily in the USA, Colombia and other countries. Asphalten gilsonite can also be bought by the ton from vendors and is low cost.

What is called elite shungite from Colombia is actually Gilsonite.

However, Gilsonite and Elite Shungite are different concepts. If Gilsonite is a natural asphaltene, then elite shungite belongs to another class – higher anthraxolites. And in geology, these concepts are not something similar or the same. Because according to their chemical, physical and molecular characteristics, they belong to different classes.

Fake shungite called Colombian Elite Silver shungite. Look, these samples have a bluish and iridescent coating. And these samples do not shine well in daylight, they are rather dull compared to real elite shungite.

By the way, please note that many samples of the so-called elite shungite from Colombia have a bluish coating. Such plaque is not typical for elite shungite. However, such a bluish coating occurs in anthracite from a single deposit in the US, Pennsylvania.

The Fake Shungite Deposit from Colombia.

Because Elite Shungite from Colombia does not exist, however, there is a natural asphaltene very similar to it – Gilsonite. There are many deposits of natural asphalt around the world: in the USA, Iran, China, and there are also in Colombia.

For example, we found a Gilsonite deposit in Colombia, South America. These photos are from the site of the real Gilsonite seller.

Note that gilsonite looks blue in the photo. It is actually black and quite shiny.

In nature, in sunlight, such objects appear bluer due to the presence of the blue spectrum of sunlight and the peculiarities of human visual perception. Our eyes have more blue cones and are more sensitive to the blue that reflects off surfaces.

How much is Columbia Gilsonite worth?

Colombian Gilsonite in sale.

As you can see, you can buy Colombian Gilsonite for $550 per ton, with a purchase of 40 tons. This is 0.55 cents per kg, or 0.00055 per gram.

Deposits of Gilsonite in the USA.

Gilsonite is a natural asphaltite, a solid hydrocarbon and its deposits exist all over the world. However, the name Gilsonite itself is a patented name for a type of asphaltene that comes from the USA, Uintah County, Utah.

The deposits of Gilsonite are known in the USA in Uintah County, Utah in Pariette Mine (Culmer Mine) and the Bonanza Mine.

So in Uintah County in Utah, USA in the 1880s, a grade of natural asphalt Gilsonite was patented by the name of the industrialist S. Gilson, who promoted this ore on the market. However, this natural Gilsonite asphalt also has a geographical name Uintahite, Uintah.

Gilsonite in Utah occurs below the Earth at a depth of about 1500 feet or 450 meters in veins or layers that extend for many kilometers. These veins run parallel to each other and are in a narrow minning face. Gilsonite veins are found mainly in the Uinta Formation of Eocene age. The Eocene is the second geological epoch of the Paleogene period. This period began on 56.0 and ended 33.9 million years ago.

Elite shungite from Karelia, more than 2 billion years old, and gilsonite asphaltite, in fact, are not similar to each other. The mineral shungite and asphaltite cannot be attributed to the same species, since they have different composition, physical and chemical properties, age and origin. Therefore, geologists gave them different names.

Gilsonite Mining.

In addition to the USA and Colombia, a special type of asphaltene – Gilsonite is also mined in other parts of the world. These include Iran, Asia, Argentina, Indonesia, Albania, Azerbaijan, and others.
The production of Gilsonite is estimated at millions of tons per year. How, for example, does Gilsonite mining look like in Asia.

Gilsonite Mining.
Gilsonite Mining.

By the way, pay attention, in the second video, the dust from Gilsonite has a brown color. In fact, the color of Gilsonite in powder is dark brown or with a hint of brown.

And vice versa, the color of real elite shungite is black, powder color and color of streak.

Gilsonite: physical and chemical properties.

Let’s take a closer look at what Gilsonite is. Gilsonite is a solid mineral hydrocarbon belonging to the asphaltite class. It is a hard brittle substance with a glossy black color and a rather bright sheen. The color of the line is brown. The fracture is conchoidal. Does not conduct electricity.

Gilsonite contains 70-96% asphaltenes with nitrogen compounds. It has a melting point above 130 degrees Celsius. It is soluble in carbon disulfide, carbon tetrachloride and many other non-polar organic solvents.

What is real elite shungite?

Genuine elite shungite has unique properties that made it famous all over the world. Elite shungite (shungite of the first type) from Karelia, Russia belongs to the genetic class of the highest anthraxolite of the Precambrian period, that is, it is hard bitumen with the highest degree of metamorphism, it conducts electricity and is diamagnetic. Does not dissolve in organic solvents and chloroform, does not decompose, does not melt. When heated, it does not give liquid products, it cracks.

The color is black, the color of the streak is black, the Fracture is conchoidal, it has a metallic or diamond luster and a specific gravity of 1.3-2.1 g/cm3 . Hardness on the Mohs scale from 2-3 to 4.5. Carbon content 96-99%, hydrogen content about 1%. The composition contains heteroelements (N, S, O).

The ability of Gilsonite to soften and melt, as well as to dissolve.

Shungite from Colombia is a fake
Gilsonite tends to soften and melt.

The Gilsonite is usually classified as a subgroup of “bituminous materials”. The physical, chemical and other properties of Gilsonite vary greatly from sample to sample. However, Gilsonite can be softened, melted and dissolved in organic solvents.
None of these listed things can be done with a real elite shungite of the first type from Karelia, Russia.
Real elite shungite does not have a softening temperature and it does not melt. Also shungite of the first type is not soluble in any solvents.

How to melt Gilsonite.

The unique grade of natural asphalt Gilsonite from Utah has a low softening point 160-220 °C (320-428 °F ). On the other hand, Colombian Gilsonite has a softening point of about 160-190 °C (320-374 °F ).

As, for example, in this video, this brand of gilsonite is melted down. This specimen comes from Iran, Gilanegarb and Gasreshirin deposits, Kermanshah on the border with Iraq. It has a softening point at 130-210 degrees Celsius (266-410°F).

This type of asphaltene is slightly different in appearance from Colombian and American Gilsonite, this is a normal deviation. However, they have the same essence, they can be melted.

Elite Shungite of the first type from Karelia, Russia does not soften, does not melt and does not dissolve in any solvents.

Moreover, Gilsonite readily dissolves without heating in aromatic solvents and in most chlorinated solvents. Also Gilsonite, being a hydrocarbon, is somewhat soluble in hydrocarbon solvents. It is more soluble in kerosene and naphtha than in crude oil.

Therefore, Gilsonite is used in the paint and varnish industry, in road construction as asphalt concrete mixtures, as well as in the production of graphite. Gilsonite is a constituent of mortars and cements for drilling oil wells. It is also used as an additive in sand molds in the foundry industry.

Gilsonite is very brittle.

Gilsonite is very brittle, and it is much more brittle than real elite shungite. These qualities are also fundamental in order to consider them completely different.
Gilsonite has a Mohs hardness of 2-2.5. While the hardness of original shungite is much higher and ranges from 3 to 4,5 on the Mohs scale.

Gilsonite is very brittle.
fake Elite shungite from Columbia
By the way, sellers of fake shungite themselves speak about this fragility.

Color of streak.

By the way, due to this property of brittleness, gilsonite is easily ground into powder. In this case, the color of the powder will be with a dark brown tint. Also, if you draw gilsonite on porcelain, for example, you will see the color of the streak being brown. The fact is that the color of the streak is an important determinant of the color of the mineral. Asphalten Gilsonite has brown streaks. On the contrary, the color of streak of elite shungite is black.

In this case, the color of gilsonite in the total mass is black (in solid form), but the color of its powder will have a brown tint. A thin strip of gilsonite powder will be brown. Also the color of the Gilsonite band will be dark brown.

The fact is that the brown color of gilsonite in powder and in a streak means its low degree of metamorphism. And Gilsonite is a petroleum oxidation product that is brown and dark brown and almost black. For example, brown color is also inherent in brown coal, which is also brown in color and contains up to 76% carbon, it has a low second degree of metamorphism, that is, it is located between lignin and stone coal.

Electrical conductivity of shungite and EMF protection.

Real elite shungite of the first type from Karelia conducts electric current. It is a semiconductor and also a diamagnet. This is due to its special molecular structure, which only authentic shungite has. Here it is necessary to say about the amazing property of shungite to absorb and reflect electromagnetic waves of high frequency, which are the most harmful for people and animals.
This EMF protective ability of shungite is associated with shungite carbon, and elite shungite with a free carbon content of up to 99% and shungite of the third type with a carbon content of around 30% have it. All types of shungite conduct electricity.

The conductivity of real elite shungite is 4762 Sim/m. The specific resistance of elite shungite is 2,18 ∙ 10-4 Om∙m.

That is, the ability to protect against EMF is associated with a special shungite carbon, as well as with the physical and chemical composition of shungite. Shungite carbon has a special structure, in which there are several types of conductivity. For example, elite shungite has high-quality electrical contacts between structural units, and there is also a current on the surfaces of shungite globules. These conductive structural units include six-membered carbon structures, pentagons and heptagons.

Is Gilsonite electrically conductive?

The Gilsonite is does not conduct electricity and is not a semiconductor. Because asphaltenes do not conduct electricity. Gilsonite does not conduct electricity and has a resistance to electric current of 1,9 ∙ 1010 Om∙m. The fact that this class of natural bitumen contains hydrocarbons in the form of asphaltene up to 86 % does not mean that it protects against EMF. Indeed, in order to have the ability to extinguish electromagnetic waves, it is necessary that the material be a good conductor. In addition, no research has yet been carried out in the field of protection of Gilsonite asphaltite from high frequency electromagnetic waves.

Elemental composition of the so-called Colombian elite shungite.

Let’s see what composition of the samples is declared by the sellers of the so-called fictitious elite shungite from Colombia. They simply state that their samples contain 99% carbon. They also write that the analysis was allegedly done at the Gemological University of America. Do you think this is true? In fact, in response to a request to send an analysis of their samples, they said that they did not have this chemical analysis.

The response of the seller of the so-called elite shungite to a request for a chemical composition.

Elemental Analysis of Gilsonite.

Elemental composition of asphaltenes (%): C (80-86), H (7-9), O (2-10), S (0.5-9), N (up to 2); there are trace amounts of V and Ni (total content 0.01–0.2%), Fe, Ca, Mg, Cu, and other metals included in metal complex compounds, such as metalloporphyrins. In fact, the elemental composition of Gilsonite, even within the same vein, can differ.
As an example, we will give the composition of asphaltene grade Gilsonite from Utah, USA.

Elemental Analysis of Gilsonite from the Uintah Basin, USAWeight, %
Carbon, (C)84,9
Hydrogen, (H)10,0
Nitrogen, (N)3,3
Sulfur, (S)0,3
Oxygen, (O)1,4
Trace elements0,1
Elemental Analis of Gilsonite from Utah, USA.

The specificity of carbon in gilsonite is that it is not pure. This carbon is present in the form of asphaltenes (up to 74-86%) with various inclusions. If these asphaltenes are freed from all inclusions, then pure carbon will remain in it. And the percentage of pure carbon in gilsonite is about 10 – 31.75%. This is the amount of carbon that can be obtained after the complete combustion of gilsonite and the removal of all impurities from it, that is, this is the so-called coke number. For comparison, for elite shungite it is about 96-99%.

Can Gilsonite be used for water?

We do not recommend adding the gilsonite to the water. Since gilsonite contains hardened heavy fractions of oil in the form of asphaltenes. Gilsonite also contains many volatile substances. It is not known how they will behave in the water.

After all, even when processing asphaltene gilsonites in industrial enterprises, workers adhere to special instructions. This is due to the fact that complex chemicals are formed during the processing of gilsonite. Even gilsonite dust can cause lung disease.

Why Colombian is shungite lightweight and real elite shungite is heavy?

We again use the false term “Colombian elite shungite”. Because we want to show with examples how big is the difference between real elite shungite and supposedly Colombian shungite.

The fact is that fake shungite will be lightweight. For example, if you take two samples of approximately the same size, then fake shungite will be lighter than real shungite. It will have a lighter weight due to the lighter structure.

For example, the Gilsonite has a lower bulk density or specific gravity than real shungite. The bulk density of Gilsonite is from 0,641 – 0,648 g/cm3 to 1,050-1,200 g/cm3, and the bulk density of elite shungite is 1,7 – 2,0 g/cm3 .

Bulk density is the ratio of the mass of a substance to the volume it occupies.

How to imagine bulk densit? Imagine a bar of gold and next to it an object that is very similar to a bar of gold (it will have the same shape and color). But this second item will be made of plastic. Which ingot will be lighter? Of course a plastic ingot will be lighter than a gold ingot. Because the structure of plastic and metal is different, plastic is lighter.

Same thing with minerals. This means that the denser the structure of the mineral, the heavier it is. So, for example, Diamond (Bulk Density 3.52 g/cm3 ) has a more densely packed structure with a large number of atoms per unit volume, while in graphite (Bulk Density 2.23 g/cm3 ) carbon atoms are loosely packed. Therefore, two samples of diamond and graphite with the same weight will have a different volume (lighter graphite will be larger in size and, accordingly, in volume).

Calculate the difference between Colombian shungite and real Elite shungite.

As we already wrote, the mineral elite shungite of the first type and gilsonite will differ in bulk density.

In the same way, the same difference exists between the so-called Colombian and elite shungite. Therefore, this fake Colombian elite shungite is lighter than real elite shungite. This can be seen even in photographs, especially on the example of large specimens. Samples of so-called Colombian elite shungite will always be larger in volume than samples of real elite shungite of the same mass.

We will not be able to accurately calculate the bulk density using the volume that we calculate from the dimensions of this “colombian” shungite sample provided by its seller. Therefore, we make calculations very roughly, just to show the difference in volume between samples of genuine and fake elite shungite.

Photo of the so-called elite shungite from Colombia and the dimensions of this sample.

So, we offer to look at a sample of fictional elite shungite from Colombia. In the meantime, please note that, it is much duller than real elite shungite. It reflects light so poorly even in this situation, when it is under the rays of daylight sunlight. This is very important, because it tells us that this sample is some kind of simple bitumen with a low degree of metamorphism. It does not reflect sunlight well and looks black, not silvery, as a real elite shungite should look like.

However, we now want to show the difference in density between real elite shungite and fictional elite shungite from Colombia.

Shungite from Colombia is a fake
Fake elite shungite.

How a genuine sample of elite noble shungite of the first type from Karelia looks like is shown below in the photo. This sample of real elite shungite was shot in a professional photo studio with studio lighting. This means that the entire sample is uniformly illuminated by light. At the same time, the original elite shungite reflects light so well that it looks like silver. Although in fact it is black.

Real elite shungite.

We have selected very similar samples, almost the same weight of 228 grams for real Elite shungite stone and 211 grams for so-called “elite shungite from Colombia”.

We will calculate approximately the volume of these two samples.
Elite shungite sample has dimensions and volume 6x6x4,2 cm = 151,2 cm3.

A sample of the so-called elite shungite from Colombia has dimensions and a corresponding volume of 8,7 x 7,2 x 3,7 cm = 231,8 cm3.

The difference in bulk density and volume between so-called Colombian Elite Shungite and original Elite shungite.

Thus, we calculated a significant difference in there is a difference in volume between real elite shungite and fake shungite. Because the structure of real elite shungite is denser and its Bulk Density is higher. Approximate volume for real elite shungite was – 151,2 cm3 (weight – 228 gr), and approximate volume for so-called colombian elite shungite was – 231,8 cm3 (weight -211 gr).

In other words, the same thing, if you take two samples of approximately the same size, then a sample of this fake of Colombian shungite will always have less weight than a real elite shungite. Because of this counterfeit Colombian shungite is lighter than real shungite in terms of Bulk Density.

These calculations are very approximate and rough, but it is enough to see that these two samples of the almost same weight differ greatly in volume. That is, a sample of so-called “elite colombian shungite” is larger than a sample of real elite shungite by about 53 %.

At the same time, regardless of what is hidden under the brand of Colombian shungite – gilsonite, anthracite or any other solid hydrocarbon. There is an objective fact that the bulk density or specific volume (the same terms) of the so-called Colombian shungite is much less than that of real elite shungite for abuot 50%.

This one speaks of the fact that there is nothing in common between the fictional elite shungite from Colombia and the genuine elite shungite. Therefore, whatever is sold under this Colombian name, it has no right to be called shungite.

How to distinguish a fake of elite shungite by photo and description.

So, if you see that the mineral is called elite shungite from Colombia and it is cheap, then this is a fake.

Shungite from Colombia is a fake
Some indefinite solid hydrocarbon, which is sold under the guise of elite shungite.

At the same time, there are no deposits of elite shungite in Colombia, as there is no scientific evidence for this fact. However, in Colombia there are deposits of Gilsonite, which has only some external similarity with the elite shungite from Karelia. But Gilsonite is only natural asphalt, which is mined in tons, it has nothing to do with the real elite shungite of the first type. And in geological terms, these are different concepts. A deposit of real shungite of the first type exists only in Karelia, Russia.

Allegedly huge nuggets are many times cheaper than small pieces.

What do you think will cost more, large pieces or small pieces of the same stone? Of course, large nuggets of the same breed will cost much more than small ones. But what if, in fact, these rocks are different and small pieces are a real mineral, and large ones are just pieces of some indefinite solid hydrocarbon? Then you will see the situation as in this case.

Elite Shungite from Colombia is a fake
Find here one lot with real elite shungite.

Let’s take a look at this showcase, here we will see samples of supposedly Elite shungite, which is indicated in the description as shungite from Colombia. At the same time, these sellers mislead buyers by indicating the name of their product as “Elite shungite”. But the fact that this is supposedly fictional elite shungite comes from Colombia, they modestly indicate only in the description.

This showcase is interesting because in its section it sells only some indefinite solid hydrocarbon in the form of large pieces from 540 grams to 7756 grams under the guise of elite shungite.

But they have only one lot with real elite shungite of a small fraction (stones 1-3 grams, 12$/10 grams or 1,2$/1 grams ). On this showcase it is shown first on the left at the top.
At the same time, they sell allegedly elite shungite in the form of huge pieces, for example, a piece weighing 7756 grams has a price 4.7 times less than small pieces weighing 1-3 grams. Its price was $1,950 per piece, which works out to $0.251 per grams.

One’s own among strangers, a stranger among one’s own.

However, they still resell real elite shungite of the first type from Karelia. But they only have very small pieces weighing around 1-3 grams at a cost of $1.2 per gram. They also indicate in the description that it is type 1 shungite. And they don’t lie, because this is a real elite shungite and it is expensive. After all, in fact, the shungite mine in Karelia has already been exhausted and small pieces of shungite veins inside it are worth their weight in gold. Look here for real elite shungite of fine fraction without intermediary overpayments.

But at the same time, we see huge pieces of so-called Elite Shungite from Colombia at a very low price of 0,251-0,516 dollars per gram, and microscopic pieces of Real Elite Shungite are sold at 1,2 dollars per gram. Small fragments are 2-5 times more expensive than huge pieces! Agree, this is very strange. At least they gave themselves away at the cost.

Well, this does not happen in life, it is impossible to appreciate the fragments of the breed more expensive in price than the huge nuggets of the same breed. It cannot be said that, for example, this Diamond from Yakutia of 2 carats will cost more than the Diamond from Africa of 3106.75 carats. However, if we suddenly see this particular situation in life, then this means that we are talking about a fake.

Why is real elite shungite silvery?

So, we realized that under the fictitious name of Elite shungite from Colombia, some kind of fake is being sold. This is not elite shungite. In addition, I would like to draw the reader’s attention to the color and brilliance of the samples in order to distinguish a fake from a photograph.

In fact, elite shungite of the first type from Karelia has a black color. But due to the fact that real elite shungite has a high reflectivity, so it looks like silver in the rays of light. The reflection coefficient for elite shungite is 3.5-10,58 %. That is, elite shungite reflects up to about 10,58 % of solar light for the most brilliant specimens. Of course, it is far from real silver, which has a reflectance of 95%. However, among all minerals with carbon content, only elite shungite has the highest reflectivity.

Why do gilsonite and the so-called Colombian shungite appear blacker?

But, for example, natural asphaltene Gilsonite has a low reflectivity. In the total solid mass, it is black (but it is brown in powder and streak). But it doesn’t reflect light that much, so when lit it doesn’t look like silver, it looks like black with a glassy sheen. The reflection coefficient for Gilsonite is 0.11 – 0.13%.

Similarly, samples of the so-called Colombian elite shungite do not reflect light well. In general, we cannot state that the reflectivity of Gilsonite and this supposedly Colombian sample is the same. But the fact is that the so-called elite Colombian shungite reflects light much weaker than real elite shungite.

Look at the photo of pieces of fake allegedly elite shungite. All of them have a black color and some luster like glass, which is actually much weaker than that of elite shungite. Therefore, fake shungite from Colombia does not look silver in the light.

The difference in shine between real elite shungite mineral of 1 type and fake shungite.

Why is shine so important?

The fact is that the property of a mineral to shine (reflectivity) is very important in order to determine whether a mineral belongs to a particular species. That is, each mineral has its own brilliance and its own reflectivity index. The higher the reflectivity index, the more light the mineral reflects, the brighter it shines.

That is why real elite shungite, which has a black color, but in the light looks like silver. And such a strong shine of the elite shungite mineral is described as metallic and diamond.

But this so-called Colombian shungite has some glassy luster, so its in the light does not look like silver, it will be almost black. Most likely, you have already been able to appreciate how much the fake is duller in the photographs above, demonstrating supposedly elite shungite from Colombia and real elite shungite.

What to do if it is not clear how shiny the sample is?

Ultimately, determining the luster of a mineral can be a difficult job for those with little experience. Still, the degree of gloss and the reflection index of the mineral is determined on special equipment. And we can only be guided only by our subjective opinion, which may differ from objective reality.

But do not despair, if there are doubts about the brilliance, then do other experiments with your samples. For example, check for electrical conductivity, because only real elite shungite conducts electricity, but Gilsonite does not.

And also run this piece over white porcelain to make a streak and see its color. Finally, you can pulverize your sample a little. And if the color of the streak or the color of the powder is brown or with a brown tint, then this means that you have a shungite fake – Gilsonite. After all, a real elite shungite will have a black color streak and powder.

By the way, an interesting fact. After all, the degree of metamorphism (the degree of change in carbon) affects the brilliance of the mineral. And the higher the metamorphism of the mineral, the stronger the brilliance it has. And elite shungite has the highest degree of metamorphism. No mineral with a carbon content has such a high degree of metamorphism.

And the degree of metamorphism depends, among other things, on the age of the mineral, for example, elite shungite has a very ancient Precambrian age (more than 2 billion years). But gilsonite – there is a very young variety of Asphalten, whose age will be the maximum of the Eocene period (30-50 million years). Therefore, Gilsonite reflects light rather little and weakly shines, because its reflection index is 30-90 times less than that of real elite shungite.

Quartz and pyrite are found in cracks only in real elite shungite.

Authentic elite shungite mineral with inclusions quartz and pyrite.

An important confirmation of the authenticity of elite shungite is the presence of veinlets of quartz and pyrite minerals in it. This is due to the antiquity of elite shungite. After all, elite shungite was formed in Karelia more than 2 billion years ago. And after this time, cracks formed in the elite shungite, into which the mineral quartz and pyrite fell.

Unlike genuine elite shungite, natural asphaltene Gilsonite does not have such inclusions, since this asphaltene is very young and it is just solidified and oxidized oil. It is known that the oldest age recorded for American Gilsonite is about 30-50 million years.

In the same way, we do not see any traces of quartz in the photographs of this supposedly elite shungite from Colombia.

genuine elite shungite mineral
Real elite shungite stone raw with inclusions quartz and pyrite.

How to distinguish fake elite shungite from the real one according to photo and description.

  • Ask if a sample of the so-called elite shungite from Colombia withstands the test for conductivity. Usually you will be told that they do not know if the sample is conductive or not. This is due to the fact that in fact their sample does not conduct electricity, since it is not a real elite shungite.
  • Samples of fake shungite have a duller sheen, as they reflect sunlight less and look blacker. And vice versa, samples of real elite shungite look silvery if the light is directed at them.
  • Samples of fake shungite Colombia often have a bluish coating, which is associated with films of vanadium oxides on their surface. Also often these samples have iridescent hues on the surface, which is also associated with films of metal oxides.
  • Fake elite shungite it is very brittle, it more fragile than real elite shungite. This is also indicated by the sellers of fake shungite themselves.
  • Gilsonite does not have quartz and pyrite inclusions in cracks.
  • Sellers note that their supposedly elite shungite is from Colombia. In fact, under this fictitious name, there is some unidentified solid hydrocarbon from Colombia, or from the USA, or from anywhere else in the world.
  • The fictitious name Raquerite means the same thing, under its guise they sell the same unidentified solid hydrocarbon.
  • Very low price and very large size of the lumps. As a rule, the price of fake elite shungite is about half the weight of the sample. And for large pieces – about a third. For example, a price of $200 usually goes for a weight of 400 grams or a little more.

Sample Specific Gravity or Density.

We use the term “bulk density”, which is the same term as “specific gravity”.

  • If you take two samples of the same weight, then the so-called shungite from Colombia sample will be 50 percent or more larger in volume than the real elite shungite. This also means that samples of the so-called elite shungite from Colombia are not elite shungite. That is, in fact, it is some still unknown solid hydrocarbons.
  • In other words, the same thing, if you take two samples of approximately the same size, then a sample of “elite shungite from Colombia” will always have about 2 times less weight than real elite shungite. Because based on the sample sizes provided by these sellers is lighter than real shungite in terms of specific gravity.

How to understand that your elite shungite is a fake on physical experience.

Conduct an experiment on the conductivity of electricity of your sample using a multimeter or a small light bulb. Only real elite shungite has the ability to conduct electricity. Real elite shungite should have such a value of current resistance that tends to zero. If the sample does not conduct electricity, then it means that it is not an elite shungite. Conductivity testing is enough to determine the authenticity of the sample.

Elite shungite vs gilsonite.

In order to distinguish between different bitumens, there are many classifications, but the main parameters are given in the table. From this table, you can see the differences between real elite shungite and the Gilsonite.
After all, the ard natural bitumen of the asphaltene class Gilsonite and the Precambrian higher atraxolite, known as elite shungite of the first type, are at opposite ends of the genetic classification.

The difference between elite shungite and gilsonite.

So maybe the elite Colombian shungite is Gilsonite?

So, we tried to understand whether Gilsonite is hidden under the name of elite Colombian shungite. We examined the real qualities of Gilsonite and showed you that Gilsonite is very different from elite shungite. We found that many qualities of Gilsonite are similar to those we see in the so-called Colombian shungite. However, we cannot say with certainty that Gilsonite is so-called Colombian Elite shungite.

However, we can definitely say that samples of the so-called Colombian shungite are not elite shungite.

After all, we do not know the chemical composition of this fictitious Colombian shungite. And most importantly, we do not see evidence of good electrical conductivity in him, because the sellers evade answering this question.

We also see that this fictional Colombian shungite has a much lighter structure than real shungite. We are told about this by the size of these samples compared to their weight, because they are much larger and lighter than the original elite shungite.

Also, these samples of the so-called shungite from Colombia have a duller luster and they are more fragile, compared to real elite shungite of the first type.

But we also consider the fact that the sellers of this so-called elite shungite from Colombia value huge pieces of almost 8 kilograms 4 times cheaper than fragments of real elite shungite from Karelia as an important argument. Believe me, if it were real elite shungite, which would have the same properties and composition as elite shungite, then the price for a piece of 8 kg would be ten times higher.

But if these samples of the so-called Colombian shungite do not match the composition of elite shungite and do not have the same physical properties, then they are not elite shungite.

Where does the real elite shungite come from?

Remember that authentic mineral of elite shungite has only one deposit on Earth, it is the Republic of Karelia in Russia. Directly near the village of Shunga there is a small deposit of elite shungite of the first type. It was by the name of the village of Shunga that this mineral was given the name Shungite. And there are no documented deposits of elite shungite of the first type in other places on Earth.

The scale of manifestation of real elite shungite is very insignificant and small, and mainly in the form of small veins.
Therefore, such huge layers, which are passed off as elite shungite from Colombia, are actually fragments of Gilsonite.

But the elite shungite from Colombia is fiction and falsification, speculation on the glory of the rare mineral shungite from Karelia. In connection with what, at present there are many shungite forgeries.