News: Zooming Into Sand

Zooming Into Sand

Incredible. There's a type of sand (found only on the small Okinawan island of Iriomote) in which each grain resembles a tiny star. And I never would have known, if it hadn't been for blogger Jason Kottke's pal Mouser. Mouser collects sand from all around the world, and then documents each sample with a macro lens:

A vial of Pāpōhaku Beach sand to show scale. Click on the second icon below to see the same sand magnified.
Pure orange sand from Coral Sand Dunes, Utah.
Sand from Papakōlea Beach. Mouser says: "The green grains are olivine, the black are basalt, and the white are possibly bits of shell. Green sand is reasonably rare; the southern tip of the big island of Hawai'i is the most common place to get it."
Star sand, found only on a few beaches in southern Japan, made of "the calcified shells of tiny organisms only a few milimeters across."
A grain of star greatly magnified under the microscope.
White, soft sand from Kichanga Lodge Beach, Zanzibar.
Sand from a glacial runoff on Kilimanjaro.

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That's so cool - I didn't know that there were different types of sand like that!

I've bigger ones that dont require microscope to see the star shapes, I got them from Penghu of Taiwan and they are organisms that makes up of corals O:

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