Uniaxial Minerals in Thin Section volume 2a is an atlas of the optical and ancillary physical properties of uniaxial minerals observable by transmitted light microscopy. The books in this series are intended as a photographic reference to accompany the more traditional theory-focused optical mineralogy textbooks normally used by students and researchers.
Data for a variety of both common and rare species are tabulated: the Nickel-Strunz classification, an end-member formula emphasizing structural units, refractive indices, color/pleochroic scheme, absorption formula, relief, optic sign, birefringence, cleavage, and the typical geologic environment and common associated species. To aid in identification, each data table concludes with a highlighted section on the most determinative characteristic properties of each featured mineral, as well as the comparative properties of optically-similar species. A chapter on strategy and techniques, with an easy-to-follow flowchart-style format, aims to help the beginning petrographer develop a good microscopy skill set. The minerals is this volume are arranged into U(+), U(+/-), and U(-) chapters, and are further organized by birefringence (decreasing for U(+) minerals and increasing for U(-) minerals); hence, minerals that may be sensibly isotropic are grouped together for easy searching.
In addition to the tabulated data, each mineral is illustrated with high-resolution plane-polarized light (PPL) and crossed polars (XP) images. Minerals whose optical properties vary with stage rotation are shown in multiple PPL images. Each photo is accompanied by descriptive text that not only identifies the featured mineral, but also fully details the associated species. The index cross-references associated species in each photo set. For three of the 23 species described in this volume, photographs from multiple localities are included to show diversity of occurrence, associations, or properties.
Volume 2a focuses specifically on uniaxial minerals and covers 23 species, including a selection of apatites, tourmalines, and carbonates. The specific minerals included are:
corundum (3 localities)
eudialyte (3 localities)
foitite (2 localities)