The Six Crystal Families
by geofablab, published
All minerals fall into one of six crystal classes based on the ordering of their component elements and polyatomic ions.
Isometric, a=b=c, alpha=beta=gamma=90 degrees
Tetragonal: a=b<>c, alpha, beta, and gamma equal 90 degrees
Orthorhombic: a, b, and c are unequal; alpha, beta, and gamma equal 90 degrees; a=20, b=30, c=40
Hexagonal: a=b<>c; alpha=beta=90 degrees, gamma=120 degrees;
Monoclinic, a, b, and c are unequal; alpha and gamma = 90 degrees, beta does not equalÃÂ 90 degrees
Triclinic: a,b, and c are unequal; neither alpha, norÃÂ beta, norÃÂ gamma equalÃÂ 90 degrees
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