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Semi-precious stone “The Zircon” From Cambodia

“The Zircon” From Cambodia

Zircon is a mineral of the silicate group, a subgroup of the nesosilicates. It is a natural zirconium silicate with the composition ZrSiO4. The blue semi-precious stone is probably the most brilliant of the zircons, which has an even higher refractive index (RI) than sapphire, tanzanite or spinel. But zircon is not well known by the general public, which is inclined to confuse it with cubic zircon (zirconium oxide of composition ZrO2. Zircon in its natural state (the mineral Baddelevite) is extracted industrially as a cheap substitute for diamond (a synthetic simulated diamond). Zircon is a naturally occurring mineral, zirconium silicate, and is found in a range of colors, including white, blue, yellow, orange, brown, pink and green.​

The Zircon in Cambodia

The Crystalline System and Formation​

The Zircon mine Ratanakiri in Cambodia

Ratanakiri zircon mines (north/western Cambodia)​.

Zircon crystallizes in the tetragonal crystal system (crystal class 4/m 2/m 2/m) and has a relative hardness of 6.5 to 7.5 on the Mohs scale. Sometimes colorless, zircons have a natural color ranging from golden to red and brown, but they can also be green, blue or black. Zircon dust is white. Zircon can be shimmering, which means that it shows a “cat’s eye” effect on cabochon-cut stones. Specimens, which by virtue of their size and purity are considered gemstones, are valued as a substitute for diamonds, with which they are often confused. Zircon crystals, in the form of grains embedded in younger rocks, are the oldest known terrestrial mineral evidence. The oldest are 4.3 to 4.4 billion years old, 150 million years after the formation of the planet. The mineral zircon forms during the genesis of common plutonic rocks, the main “granitoid” constituents of the Earth’s crust, in particular granites and alkaline rocks such as pegmatite or syenite. It appears with the early products of the primary crystallization of magmatic rocks. These minerals are quartz, plagioclase and potassium feldspars, hornblende, biotite, chlorite, muscovite, rutile, apatite, pyrite and monazite. It is a rare mineral in basalts but relatively common in granites, gneisses, syenites and pegmatites, often as inclusions in the biotite contained in these rocks.​

Zircon is found in igneous rock formations and gemstone deposits in many parts of the world, including Thailand, Brazil, Sri Lanka, Australia and Cambodia. The mines in Thailand, Cambodia and Sri Lanka produce the largest jewellery quality crystals and the greatest variety of colors. Of these three sources, Cambodia produces the highest quality blue zircon.​

The Blue Zircon

Blue Zircon is known in ancient times as Hyacinth and was used for healing. This protective stone was said to cure madness, make you resistant to temptation and strengthen the intellect. Blue Zircon has been highly prized in jewellery for hundreds of years and was favored by the Victorians as large stones in rings and brooches, especially around 1800. In ancient times, Blue Zircon was used to protect against theft, lightning, bodily injury and disease. Each color resonates with a different chakra – a birthstone for December.The significance of the Blue Zircon stone is the clarification of your mind. Among its benefits, this gemstone gives you back your purity. It heals your stagnant energy from various stresses. It is effective to use it when you feel you have a lot of negative energy in you or if you are losing your self-confidence. Blue Zircon can help you reconcile with being a spiritual entity in a physical body, or less afraid of being a physical being opening to Spirit. It helps to balance these polarities, helping you to feel more stable and aligned with the physical and spiritual world. Zircon banishes depression, anxiety and grief. Blue Zircon teaches you consistency, making it a virtuous stone of protection, traditionally a test for celibacy. Overcoming jealousy and possessiveness, it promotes letting go of old love and opening up to new.​

When natural zircon is heat treated, the resulting stones can be colorless, yellow, green, black or blue. ​

Blue Zircon
Blue Zircon

For any information :

  • Expedition “Ratanakiri Province” (waterfalls, rubber plantations, pepper, cashew nuts, lakes, tribes, tribal villages…)​
  • Discovery around the stones (from the mine, to the cutters, to the jewelers…)​