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What color is elite shungite?

What color is elite shungite?

All geologists who study shungite call the color of shungite black.
In fact, the real color of noble elite shungite is black. Also the streak color of shungite is black. The color of the streak is an important diagnostic feature for determining the mineral. To see it, you need to grind the mineral into powder or rub the sample on white rough porcelain.

However, many of our readers will object to us, because they see a real elite shungite of silver color. Maybe this silvery color is some additional color of elite shungite?

So, what color is elite shungite – black or silver?

What color is elite shungite?
Photo of the same sample of elite shungite stone from different lighting angles.

The fact is that, important feature of elite shungite is its brilliance. This rare mineral has a very strong luster, this luster is called diamond-like, as well as a strong metallic-like luster. The reflection coefficient (R0) for elite shungite is 3.5-10.58%.

That is why geologists describe elite shungite as a black mineral with a strong diamond-like luster.

Thanks to such a strong luster, shungite reflects light well, so when shungite is illuminated with light, it looks like silver.

Why is this shungite called elite?

Elite shungite is a very rare variety of shungite from Karelia with more than 98% carbon. In fact, scientists officially call it shungite of the first type or a brilliant variety of shungite, they also call it Karelian higher anthraxolite. Therefore, this descriptive word is “elite” or “noble” shungite, it’s just a marketing ploy.

However, everyone who is familiar with shungite distinguishes mainly two types of shungite – elite shungite (with a strong luster that seems silvery) and black classic shungite. In this regard, the descriptive epithet “elite” stuck very strongly to this rare type of shungite of the first type.

Therefore, if they talk about elite shungite, they mean its “silver” variety. Now you know what color elite shungite really is. However, calling this rare type of shungite elite and silver will not be a big mistake. After all, if you really understand minerals and shungite, then you understand that we are talking about shungite of the first type of black color with a strong diamond-like luster.

What color is elite shungite?
Is elite shungite stone silver or black color?

What is the difference between elite shungite and black classic shungite?

Elite shungite has a black color and strong luster, while black shungite has a black color and does not have a strong luster, as it is matte. Also, a stronger shine distinguishes genuine elite shungite from fakes.

The fact is that elite shungite is a rare variety of classic black shungite. And black classic shungite is often called shungite of the third type or Zazhoginsky shungite (named after the place of extraction in Karelia) in scientific circles.

At the same time, all varieties of shungite are black, since they all consist of amorphous shungite carbon, which is black.

However, elite shungite is, as it were, concentrated shungite to the highest degree. After all, it contains more than 98% of the unique amorphous carbon. While classic shungite contains about 30% amorphous carbon on average.

At the same time, elite shungite has a strong shine, while classic shungite does not have such a shine and is matte in its raw form. Also, products from black classic shungite can be polished, then the shungite becomes shiny. However, in terms of characteristics, it still does not have the same brilliance as elite shungite.

By the way, if we can make any products from classic black shungite, from beads to pyramids. Then it is impossible to make anything from elite shungite. This is due to the fact that the reserves of elite shungite are almost exhausted. And most importantly, it is impossible to make anything out of it because of its fragility and unyieldingness, as well as the absence of large blocks of material.