I am interested in identifying the properties of rocks. For example, black opal is shiny and can emit 5 different colors based on different lighting conditions. Is there a way for an amateur to be able to find out the crystal structure and understand why these different lights are being emitted?
Also is there a way to guess the chemical property of rocks based on just knowing their composition? If yes, is there something an amateur can self-learn to analyze these?
If it requires certain equipment, and I can't theoretically analyze it, I might be able to ask for permission from the chemistry department, so is there something I can do there? Although it'd be great not needing to use that instrument since getting perm is hard.
Thanks a lot!