Jadeite Jade has been known and treasured for more than 7,000 years. But only in 1863 was it discovered that jade is actually not a single mineral. What was traditionally called jade is in fact two separate and distinct minerals: jadeite and nephrite.
Nephrite is the more common form of jade. Nephrite ranges in color from mid- to dark-green or grey-green, but it can also be white, yellowish or reddish. Nephrite is slightly softer than jadeite; nephrite is 6-6.5 on the Mohs scale, while jadeite is 6.5-7. They have quite different chemical compositions as well; nephrite is a calcium magnesium iron silicate while jadeite is a sodium aluminum silicate. The two minerals also have different densities. Jadeite has a density of 3.30-3.38 while nephrite is less dense at 2.90-3.03.
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GemSelect has a great selection of smaller cabochons. Many other retailers do not. Plus, the photo of the stone is the one you are purchasing. Shipping from Thailand is nearly as fast as from within the US. Stones are tightly and neatly packaged.