Science Questions

Are there precious stones in Edinburgh?

Sun, 27th Apr 2008

Listen Now    Download as mp3 from the show The Sparkling Science of Gemstones


Alan asked:

Edinburgh is built on a huge block of granite and you said that gems can often be found in granite. Why arenít we looking to Edinburgh as the gem-Mecca of the north?


We put this question to Ian Mercer:

Edinburgh actually is partly built on, or the castle is certainly built on, the remains of a volcano. Actually itís a basalt volcano. Yes, you can get gems in basalt but if you search all the basalt around the world looking for gems youíll only find gems in relatively few, relatively speaking. Before you try to seek permission to dig up Edinburgh Iíd think about the geology first.

Chris: Thereís probably better things to find in Edinburgh like whiskey, for example!


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