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What about heliodor from Tajikistan?
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bob kerr




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PostPosted: Nov 14, 2011 14:24    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

what happened to daid von bargen's post?

never mind - that was on the mindat board - got my boards confused.

bob


alfredo wrote:
Bob, the Al in quartz that leads to smoky colour on irradiation is present substituting for Si in the quartz lattice itself, invisibly, not as inclusions of Al-bearing minerals. The "milkyness" of quartz crystals is caused by myriad inclusions of liquid and/or gas (microscopic "bubbles"), not solid Al-bearing inclusions.

And, as David von Bargen has pointed out in the parallel Mindat thread on this topic, you only need to heat smoky quartz to get rid of the smoky color after irradiation. So it seems the support for natural origin is getting still weaker.

Alfredo
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PostPosted: Nov 14, 2011 15:16    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

Good news, Bob. Experiment beats mere arguments every time. I'm looking forward to the results!

I suppose if someone wanted to go to a lot of trouble, the REE distribution in the associated feldspars might indicate the region of origin? (One would also have to create a database of trace element signatures for numerous pegmatites of known source.)
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PostPosted: Nov 14, 2011 15:40    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

Good evening, Bob

Here is link to page where you can see a smoku quartz with an aqua.
So, as you could see, radiation acts in different ways

https://www.buenavistagemworks.com/gallery/photo1.htm
(link normalized by FMF)

Could be a case of a maxixe beryl... Who knows?

For albite, well, if you see in mindat, seems that albite is still white even having dark smokey quartz
https://www.mindat.org/gallery.php?min=3689

Curiously, also, seems that quartz has some reluctancy ti be homogeneous and get a smoky tone that is not continous.

As examples.
https://www.mindat.org/photo-194309.html
https://www.mindat.org/photo-276201.html
https://www.mindat.org/photo-276312.html
https://www.mindat.org/photo-147533.html

The last is wonderful

I suppose, as you said that should be treated with a alligned focus of gamma rays...
Only rims are smokey :-)

If you like, I can continue.

But , and I use not capitals, that mean shouting, as you use :-) , you will to beleive that they are natural.
No one till now has been able to show the mine (well, the Gentle Krustle mine now (that I suppose that is a well known farsi name.... I will ask my friend that speaks farsi,.... Curious); piss, err, Zelatoya Vada is not more there....)
No one has been able to show that they are different from Paki and China ones (sorry, Mr. Sampson White, but I see same as Jesse, And besides, same as the russian expert)
All data shows that could be very well irradiated beryls.
And, if you want to add more things, a dealer in Vietnam, selling a lot of "vietnamese" heliodors, sold also extremely rare green gemmy amazonite.
Take a thing in account: amazonite seems to be changed to green by irradiation.
Then tke a chunk of Ittrongay orthoclase (gemmy), and irradiate it: wonder of wonders, green and asking astronomical prices....

Sorry, Bob.

Seller/s should provide *data*, with a GPS position, to let see the rest of unbelivers that we are wrong. Of course, in casw we are.... :-)

Besides, you see that there is no need to heat smokey.
Just some quartzs decide that the do not go smokey.... :-)

And (more) besides, the last example, main body is milky (as per you, full of Al substitutions),
Nevertheless, facts are that heretic (heretikos: the right to choose), that insist to be white...

So, as Alfredo pointed, well, the case is for me very clear.

I thank you a lot your question.
I searched the net a lot, and I find several answers.
Only some placed.

With best wishes

Lluís
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PostPosted: Nov 14, 2011 17:18    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

Although I respect John White greatly, I have to disagree with his view that material such as this needs to be treated as genuine until it is proven to be fake.

This is a dangerous path to go down - and one that only makes it more attractive for people to fake minerals.

As scientists, we should be naturally suspicious of anything that is out of the ordinary, and the onus of proof needs to be in cases like this for those who believe they are genuine to reassure us that they they are.

In the three biggest mineralogical frauds of recent times (the himmelsfurst silvers, the tadjikistan beryls and the hollowed galenas from bulgaria) - each came with the same suspicious story - lack of any evidence of natural formation (eg photos of material in-situ), and the same trickle of high value specimens into the market, followed by a small flood of similar pieces, followed by the mysterious disappearance of those involved in the original supply. None of that on its own is evidence of fraud, but when taken into the big picture along with other more direct evidence it paints a very suspicious picture.

There is too much money involved in these things for people to be naive about the possibility of fraud.

If you can't prove something is fake, it doesn't mean it should be treated as genuine. Be suspicious.

Jolyon

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PostPosted: Nov 14, 2011 17:44    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

This thread and the one on Mindat about these beryls are fascinating to watch from my perspective, because I'm a research psychologist who studies how people form and maintain beliefs -- and that includes exotic and delusional beliefs as well.

I also find the argument "prove they are fake" to be oddly reversed. The fact that the source/mine has not been conclusively documented is a huge red flag. The same was true for the hollowed galenas, as Jolyon noted. It made me smile that a young, budding mineralogist (Jessica) showed superb critical thinking and brought a strong verdict on that claim. It was an object lesson for all.

Cheers,

Jim

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PostPosted: Nov 14, 2011 21:18    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

john - you've consistently made the point that "there's a distinctive habit consistent throughout the lot". and others point out that even with this unique termination, it does not differ significantly from pakistani stuff. let me add some additional "evidence" that may point to a number of different directions. take a look at the two matrix specimens attached. to me, these are MUCH more like traditional pakistani material - ie: the more blocky terminations which differ from the photo you presented as well as differs from my heliodor/quartz association piece.

to me this suggests two or more mine sources.

so what? well, the explanation jesse proposed (someone is simply acquiring beryl specimens from any of a number of localities and treating them) could be appropriate.

or

could there be a "real" heliodor locality somewhere among the 'stans and treated aquas are getting mixed in and confused with the real mccoys?? assuming there's not an appropriate way to color beryl without darkening quartz, as i've been arguing (this may not be a good assumption) then there may indeed be some real ones mixed in with the irradiated ones(?).

jesse's argument seems more plausable - but i'm gonna do more research and testing on the "heating heliodor and smokey quartz to eliminate the darkening but not eliminate the yellow" possibility proposed by david on the mindat site thread. i'll report back what i find.

finding heliodor specimens in association with white quartz is the main reason i felt confident in buying this material - if this is a wrong assumption then i'll try to take them back to the dealer - who has taken stuff back before and i believe him to be at least reputable enough to accept returns - he may have been fooled also.

thoughts?

bob



John S. White wrote:
I have to disagree with Jesse about the habit. The fine quality loose crystals usually free of matrix have a distinct habit that is virtually consistent throughout the lot. There are other, previously mentioned, flattened ones of an ugly color occurring with muscovite that could be from anywhere, China or Pakistan. I have not seen the habit I am referring to in abundance from Pakistan. Even if treated and even if not from Tajikistan (as seems to be the case) I suspect that they are from a totally different pegmatite than those that have produced most of the aquas from Pakistan. Their habit is uniform and distinctive.

As for Jordi's point, if the truth has not surfaced even after 20 years, then my guess is that it never will. To some extent his point is moot anyway, because one rarely sees them being sold today.



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PostPosted: Nov 14, 2011 21:28    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

jim - i enjoyed seeing part of your collection in the "texas collectors" special MR issue - very nice specimens. i especially like that small gwindel - i've been looking for something in that size range for years.

when my PM gets authorized (need to be registered for more than 10 days) i'd love to discuss exotic and dillusional beliefs with you.

bob

Jim wrote:
This thread and the one on Mindat about these beryls are fascinating to watch from my perspective, because I'm a research psychologist who studies how people form and maintain beliefs -- and that includes exotic and delusional beliefs as well.

I also find the argument "prove they are fake" to be oddly reversed. The fact that the source/mine has not been conclusively documented is a huge red flag. The same was true for the hollowed galenas, as Jolyon noted. It made me smile that a young, budding mineralogist (Jessica) showed superb critical thinking and brought a strong verdict on that claim. It was an object lesson for all.

Cheers,

Jim
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PostPosted: Nov 14, 2011 21:44    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

Hi Bob,

Thanks for the kind words. I'm glad you've been pushing for evidence in this issue. So far, what I've seen is no convincing evidence that these are naturally colored heliodors from the purported locality. Instead, it seems like it''s a "my opinion can beat up your opinion" reaction to the subject.

I think the documented truth will eventually be revealed; after all, someone somewhere already knows the answer as to whether there really is a legitimate find or whether these are frauds.

Cheers,

Jim

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PostPosted: Nov 15, 2011 00:16    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

Those two specimens sure look a lot like hundreds (if not thousands) of specimens I've seen over the past 20+ years from the pegmatites around Nager, Hunza Valley, Northern Pakistan, except the color of the beryl is different.
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PostPosted: Nov 15, 2011 00:38    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

So to reiterate, we are discussing two interrelated questions: Have the beryls been treated to become heliodors, and are they from some pegmatite in Tajikistan? From the previous discussion, it sounds as if there is no reliable method to discern whether the specimens have been treated, or even what the treatment may be. Maybe there is a way to determine the locality of the purported heliodor crystals.

While traveling in New Mexico this summer, I had the chance to visit with a university geologist who described to me a process being refined at the school. LIBS, laser induced blast spectroscopy, is a process that supposedly could very precisely identify the locality of a specimen. It could be done in conjunction with engraving an I.D. into a faceted stone. It would be one way to determine if a diamond was a conflict stone, if it had no provenance. Or if a blue topaz was from Brazil, or from Mason county, Texas.

I don't know if they have developed an exhaustive database of stones and localities, yet. However, this may be one way to test if the yellow beryls have the same "fingerprint" of a Ping Wu goshenite, or a pale aqua from Nagar.
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PostPosted: Nov 15, 2011 03:49    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

Jolyon Ralph wrote:

Although I respect John White greatly, I have to disagree with his view...


To support of John, just point out that he always said that as this material could be suspicious he warned about it and the people, although the warning, they liked it and kept it, so I believe that the real discussion is about if the main sellers (other people could be just re-sellers) are honest telling the truth or not.

Is frequent in shows the presence of "artifacts" not so much natural. Not too much complains about it, the complain is about the lie (if lie ;-)

BTW, thank you so much to all participants in this thread for a so polite kind of discussion in a so delicate topic.
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PostPosted: Nov 15, 2011 06:12    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

I am not quite sure which view of mine Jolyon is disagreeing with. I note that on mindat Jolyon described these heliodors as treated "low-grade aquas." While they may indeed be treated, those that I have handled, and the one in my personal collection, are certainly not low-grade crystals. If anything they are high-quality crystals.
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PostPosted: Nov 15, 2011 06:29    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

John S. White wrote:
I am not quite sure which view of mine Jolyon is disagreeing with. I note that on mindat Jolyon described these heliodors as treated "low-grade aquas." While they may indeed be treated, those that I have handled, and the one in my personal collection, are certainly not low-grade crystals. If anything they are high-quality crystals.


Low-grade as in very pale blue. The paler ones are worth less. Similar to the use of the paler amethyst to bake into "Citrine" in Brazil.

I was told by a reliable source that this technique for treating aqua was discovered in the mid 1980s when an importer of pakistani gem material sent some low-grade (ie poor colour) aquamarine to be irradiated to see if it was possible to enhance the blue colour. The lab phoned back, apologised for ruining the crystals - "they've all gone yellow". Not long after that these mysterious Tadjikistan 'heliodors' started to appear.

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PostPosted: Nov 15, 2011 06:48    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

This is all new to me. Surely the lab that did the treatment can be traced and then we will at least know who did it and when and possibly even for whom. Surely the "reliable source" can produce this information. This would be a major step forward in resolving this great mystery which has persisted for far too long.

Still not certain which view of mine Jolyon is in disagreement with.

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PostPosted: Nov 15, 2011 07:03    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

My "source" was the person who commissioned the lab (in California) to irradiate the samples! At Tucson I will introduce them to you so you can hear the story first-hand.

This was being imported and sold at the time as gem rough material, so no fraud was intended - but it must have been soon after this that either news of this discovery was made or it was independently discovered elsewhere.

My disagreement was with the comment from your article where you "challenge to the naysayers to put up or shut up". If something is suspicious, we should say so, and not be afraid of being labelled 'naysayers', or told to shut up! - look what happened with the hollowed-out galenas. People were too scared to be critical of these things, and it took a twelve year old girl to realise the stupidity of this attitude and to finally prove they were faked.

This industry has a not entirely honourable past in dealing with these sorts of events - look at how some magazines (but not all, thankfully) refused to discuss the issue of the fake Himmelsfurst silvers.

Thankfully in the internet age, discussions such as this one can carry on in a moderated and respectful way to argue the validity of such finds. It's good for the science that this critical approach continues without contributors such as myself being labelled 'naysayers' or worse!

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PostPosted: Nov 15, 2011 07:46    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

I first encountered these treated beryls back in the late 1980s. A couple Afghani dealers whom I have purchased many pegmatite specimens from over the years had a tray of these yellow pencil-like crystals at a local show. They freely admitted were irradiated Pakistani aquamarine that they had acquired in Peshawar. They were largely identical to the first crystals labeled as "Tajikistan" that I encountered a couple years later at Tucson.

This is anecdotal evidence, to be sure. However, given the human propensity for deceit when there is money to be made, I have been, and will remain highly suspicious until such time as I see a credible report on the supposed locality surfaces.
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PostPosted: Nov 15, 2011 08:51    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

i agree - these two are no doubt irradiated - but like john says, they sure make nice display pieces and have some value as long as they're properly identified as such. the dealer i bought them from was clear they were not treated. he was also either fooled or one of the perpetrators.

i'm still having problems though with the heliodor/quartz pieces - besides the challenge of irradiating beryl and not darkening quartz, the beryl xl and the matrix on that specimen is significantly different than the two specimens i just posted. the terminations are different and one matrix is mica and the other is blocky feldspar. this indicates two different localities (the locality is probably in uzbeckybeckybeckystanstan - sorry couldn't resist that one) and the one locality that produced the heliodor/quartz piece could be an honest heliodor source.

like i mentioned - if i can see evidence of a process that will result in yellow beryl and white quartz i would then be willing to throw in the towel with the naysayers.

bob

Jesse Fisher wrote:
Those two specimens sure look a lot like hundreds (if not thousands) of specimens I've seen over the past 20+ years from the pegmatites around Nager, Hunza Valley, Northern Pakistan, except the color of the beryl is different.
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PostPosted: Nov 15, 2011 09:01    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

with apologies to my mineral collegues outside the US, the "uzbeckystanstan" joke has become viral in the US thanks to a republican presidential candidate. you can see the video of this on youtube by searching on "cain on foreign policy" and view the first video.

bob
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PostPosted: Nov 15, 2011 10:55    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

Good evening.

Just for info, the new name done for the supposed placed where tajik "heliodors" are found, is not related in any way with farsi.
That said by a friend that speaks farsi (and so says his wife, that speaks it also, as native speaker).

I just let you all wonder about this.

With best wishes

Lluís
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PostPosted: Nov 15, 2011 11:30    Post subject: Re: What about heliodor from Tajikistan?  

So why after about 25 years is the name of the person who commisioned the lab and/or the name of the lab still confidential? Why must I wait until Tucson to find out who it is? I would like to know how many crystals they treated. It would have to have been a large number because there were hundreds on the market some time ago. If they didn't treat hundreds, then someone else must have done the treatments.
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