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I am writing an app for students that consist in 180 sheets of the most common minerals on Earth's Crust.

One of the fields of the sheets is environment of formation.

It is important to me to correctly classify environments because I generate with code thousands of questions for a quiz type:

In wich environment would you found calcopyrite?

a) Sedimentary

b) ....


This is my classification of environments of formation of minerals:

  • Sedimentary: diagenesys minerals etc (calcite, halite...).
  • Magmatic: sensu stricto igneous minerals (quartz, plagioclase...).
  • Metamorphic: minerals formed on metamorphism (muscovite, clorite...).
  • Tardimagmatic: stockworcks, IOCG, VMS, etc, derivatived from magma.(copper, pyrite...).
  • Hydrothermal: basin fluids, veins of hig-medium-low grade (quartz, serpentinite...).
  • Exogenous: neoformation minerals on surface by (alteration clays...).

My question is: is this classification correct?

I am particullary worried about tardimagmatic environment. I am sure the term is used at Spain, but it migth not be very accurate at anglo saxon Universities, for the english version of my app.


Update from answers

Thank you very much for answers. Exogenous was totally an inaccurated term and I suspected tardimagmatic was not a very used term, so my clasification will be:

  • Sedimentary
  • Magmatic
  • Metamorphic
  • Hydrothermal
  • Supergenic

My users will thank it.

As answering Gimelist yes the sheets have multiple environments as you can see for pyrite. This is taken in count when I generate the questions (not to show two correct options).

enter image description here

I know to memorize is not a good way to learn, but for first courses they should associate quickly eg heidenbergite as inosilicate. I add a description of the environment so I think the quiz has some pedagocical value for first courses students.

enter image description here

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A genetic classification.

Endogenic: Magmatic, Metamorphic, Hydrothermal Exogenic: Supergene, Sedimentary

For more on this please see Wenk, H. R., & Bulakh, A. (2016). Minerals: their constitution and origin. Cambridge University Press (second edition) or the first edition of this book(2004).

enter image description here

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    $\begingroup$ I think I am gonna change my term exogenous, (that should be named exogenic by the way) for supergenic. May include my tardimagmatic minerals in just magmatic. Thank you very much. $\endgroup$ – Leukocyte Oct 9 at 10:39
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    $\begingroup$ At some point we're going to have to fit anthropogenic into the system. $\endgroup$ – Spencer Oct 9 at 16:11
  • $\begingroup$ As for hydrothermal I am gonna keep that type. It is difficult to know if hot fluids derive from magma or from basin fluids hotted by geothermal gradient. And gonna include in magmatic all those VMS, IOCG deposits etc. Thank you very match as when I did the database I am modifuing before publishing, I didn't remember the term is supergenic, not exogenic. $\endgroup$ – Leukocyte Oct 9 at 19:07
  • $\begingroup$ @Spencer for sure. There are rocks being formed at seabed with plastics as main clasts. In some by there will be a isochrone there well defined. $\endgroup$ – Leukocyte Oct 9 at 19:10
  • $\begingroup$ Don't bypass, that there is a distinct group hydrothermal-sedimantary. In which, while deposition/diagenesis on going, the pore water shifting into metal rich solutions. Then this metal rich pore water inside the sediments, covered by more sediments. During solidification chemical reactions take place and sulfide mineralization occur under 200 centigrade degree temperature. $\endgroup$ – Muharrem Yavuz Oct 9 at 20:28
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It is probably not ideal and misleading.

Nomenclature first:

I have been in several universities, both in the English speaking and non-English speaking world. I also attended multple international conferences. I have never seen the term "Tardimagmatic". Ever. Also, your "Exogenous" is much more commonly referred to as "supergene".

That said, most minerals cannot be classified into formation mode. Quartz - can be igneous, metamorphic, hydrothermal, sedimentary, etc. What about garnets? They can be igneous or metamorphic. They can also form by pertitectic partial melting, so they just straddle the igneous-magmatic boundary. Calcite? Another example of a mineral that can be hydrothermal, igneous, metamorphic, or sedimentary.

You give the example of chalcopyrite. It can form hydrothermally around igneous intrusions. It can also be sedimentary. Pretty much all minerals can also be metamorphic.

I may be blunt here - but this type of learning is old fashioned. Modern learning techniques rarely focus on memorising properties of stuff. This can all be looked up easily online. Teaching now focuses on a systems approach, and understanding of why things happen.

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