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Home » Rocks

Rocks: Igneous, Metamorphic and Sedimentary


Rocks hold the history of the earth and the materials that will be used to build its future.

Most Popular
racetrack playa
Sliding Rocks - Racetrack Playa How these rocks slide across a dry lake bed is a mystery. Photo © iStockphoto / Stephan Hoerold
coal through a microscope
Coal Through a Microscope: Coal is more than a black rock. It's THE most interesting rock.
rock tumblers
Rock Tumblers: Step-by-step guide to tumble-polishing rocks into gemstones.
granite
Uses of Granite: The rock used everywhere from the kitchen to the facing stone of skyscrapers.
Sand grains through a microscope
"A Grain of Sand": A gallery of sand grains photographed through a microscope by Dr. Gary Greenberg.
forensic geology
Forensic Geology: "My students come to class thinking that dirt is dirt and sand is sand...".
Sliding Rocks
NASA at Racetrack Playa: Visit Racetrack Playa to solve the mystery of the sliding rocks.
yosemite rockfall
Spectacular Yosemite Rockfall: A photo sequence of rockfall and debris avalanche by Herb Dunn.
"We learn geology the morning after the earthquake."
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Igneous
diorite Igneous Rocks: Photos and facts about intrusive and extrusive igneous rocks.
Andesite
Andesite
  Basalt
Basalt

Quartz Diorite
Diorite
  Gabbro
Gabbro

Granite
Granite
  Obsidian
Obsidian

Pegmatite
Pegmatite
  Peridotite
Peridotite

Pumice
Pumice
  Rhyolite
Rhyolite

Scoria
Scoria
  Welded Tuff
Tuff

petroglyphs
Rock Art: People have been producing rock art for thousands of years. A world-wide collection.
Carbonatite lava flows
Carbonatite Lava Flows at Oldoinyo Lengai: These CO2-rich lavas flow like motor oil.
Tell Zeidan
Tell Zeidan: Excavation in Syria reveals an obsidian trade and copper metallurgy at 4000 BC.
Tell Zeidan
Difficult Rocks: Elementary students find lots of rocks that you will not be able to identify.
Obsidian artifacts
Obsidian Secrets: Rock characteristics reveal Native American travel routes.
mineral specimens
Mineral Show Photos: From the 2010 Tucson Gem, Mineral & Fossil Show.
"Oil is found in the minds of men."
Wallace Pratt
Metamorphic
gneiss
Metamorphic Rocks: Photos and facts about foliated and non-foliated metamorphic rocks.
Amphibolite
Amphibolite
  Gneiss
Gneiss

Hornfels
Hornfels
  Marble
Marble

Novaculite
Novaculite
  Phyllite
Phyllite

Quartzite
Quartzite
  Muscovite Schist
Schist

Slate
Slate
  Soapstone
Soapstone

soapstone
Soapstone is a talc-rich rock with properties that make it suitable for a variety of projects.
Rock Kits
Rock Kit
Rock Kits: Get a collection of sedimentary, metamorphic and igneous rocks.
Water ice
Where Rocks are Made of Ice: Rocks on Saturn's moon Titan are likely made of water ice.
Mars Mystery Rock
Mars Mystery Rock: What are these coatings on rocks at a young crater?
Great Bahama Bank
Great Bahama Bank: A spectacular image of the Bank, islands and surrounding ocean.
"The present is the key to the past."
Charles Lyell
Sedimentary
conglomerate
Sedimentary Rocks: Photos and facts about clastic, chemical and organic sedimentary rocks.
Breccia
Breccia
  Chert
Chert

Anthracite Coal
Coal
  Conglomerate
Conglomerate

Flint
Flint
  Hematite Iron Ore
Iron Ore

Limestone
Limestone
  Oil shale
Oil Shale

Halite Rock Salt
Rock Salt
  Sandstone
Sandstone

Shale
Shale
  Siltstone
Siltstone

dolomite
Dolomite
  soil sand
Oil Sand

shale
Shale: The rock that is quickly transforming the energy industry by yielding natural gas.
Sand
sand
Sand is a diverse material. This gallery includes photos of sand from around the world.
limestone
Limestone: A versatile rock used in cement, food, paint, paper, drugs, concrete & more!
Banded Iron Formations
Banded Iron Formations: A new model is proposed for the origin of BIFs.
Mars rocks
Rocks on Mars: Many of the rocks found on Mars are not very different from Earth rocks.
"The best geologist is the one who has seen the most rocks."
Herbert Harold Read


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