THE LECTURES

Program 2018

All these lectures will be held in the CIAP building, 2nd floor, located in the yard of the Val d’Argent Expo (Mineral Zone).

  • Lectures on Thursday, June 21, 2018

GAME OF SYMMETRIA, GAME OF LIGHT

> By Jean-Luc Jacquot, PhD in Physical Sciences 
> Language: French
> Schedule: Thursday at 11 am
> Duration: 1h

JACQUOT_IllustrationIn a gem, the interaction of light happens on its surface and in the heart of the stone and respects the symmetries inherent to the structure at each scale of magnitude. When light interacts at the quantum level, the result is a large color palette for most gemstones (beryl, chrysoberyl, corundum, etc.), colors that usually depend on the orientation of the stone, or on the light spectrum, as in the case of Alexandrite or certain garnets.
On a larger scale, if the inclusions in a gem are oriented according to the symmetry of the crystal, the light playing in the stone produces the asterism. As for the interaction of light with certain opal gems, which are formed of real natural photonic crystals, they lead to a fantastic firework of color.
At this point, the mineral kingdom joins the animal kingdom, since a similar mechanism moves the light on the wings of some butterflies!


BOLTSBURN MINE, THE ORIGINS OF A LEGEND

> By Enrico Rinaldi, mineralogist and specialist of the fluorite
RINALDI_Illustration-1024x767> Language: English
> Schedule: Thursday at 1:30 pm
> Duration: 1h

Boltsburn mine has not only provided some of the finest fluorite specimens from the North of England, but also the world. This is a look at the history of the mine from the 19th century to present day, including videos and pictures of more recent explorations, as well as a look at the remarkable variety of specimens Boltsburn has provided which are the legacy of the miners who left such indelible marks on the world of mineralogy.


THE FOSSILS OF LEBANON

> By Pierre Abi Saad, paleontologist and expert on fish fossils from Lebanon 
> Language: French
> Schedule: Thursday at 3 pm
> Duration: 1h

ABI_SAAD_IllustrationMany illustrations and photographs, enable you to travel through time and go to meet this true treasure of paleontology.
First of all, you will discover the history of Lebanese fish fossils, from their first discoveries that goes back to antiquity until the most recent finds, the excavations and the material used as well as the preparation methods and studies.
Secondly, photographs of a large variety of fossil species from Lebanon will be shown, followed by comparisons between living species and their fossilized ancestors.


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  • Lectures on Friday, June 22, 2018

SIGNIFICANT MOMENTS IN THE HISTORY OF TOURMALINE

> By Paul Rustmeyer, Doctor in chemistry and tourmaline specialist 
RUSTEMEYER_illustration-1024x546> Language: French
> Schedule: Friday at 11 am
Duration: 1h

For many centuries, only a few crystals of colored tourmaline have been discovered and they were never recognized as minerals on their own. They have always been confused with other precious stones, such as emerald and ruby. It is only at the beginning of the 17th century that the Ceylon Tourmaline began to be distinguished from precious stones. Tourmalines have fascinated naturalists at first glance with their magical and electric attraction. Collectors wanted to get them for their ‘cabinet of curiosity’, and gave them at that time the status of collectible item.
From the 19th century, the most important tourmaline deposits were gradually discovered. The market for this gemstone developed little by little in the 20th century. During the last 30 years, tourmaline has really become a gem in its own right. The interest of the collectors for these remarkable tourmaline crystals has also increased, so that some mines have concentrated their activities on the careful extraction of these ‘fine minerals’.
The speaker brought together many surprising, captivating and adventure-rich illustrated stories, based on multiple different sources. The scientific and social developments of tourmaline crystals are also reflected in all facets of these historical discoveries, reported in writing.


SYMPOSIUM

Logo> By 3 specialized speakers
Language: French (and English)
> Schedule: Friday at 3 pm
Duration: ≈ 1 ½ hour
Bandeau site internet_FR> Reservation (compulsory) HERE (capacity: 50 seats)

For the 4th consecutive year, Mineral & Gem offers a free event open to everyone. Focused on scientific information, this meeting of experts and professionals is a unique opportunity to promote and discuss various topics.

Once again this year we are very pleased to receive three speakers who participate in this meeting for presenting their works concerning the following topics:
The Historical Collections at the Mineralogy Museum of StrasbourgDenis Leypold, Doctor of History of Science and Technology, Curator at the Museum of Mineralogy of Strasbourg and Barbara Gollain, Geologist with a degree in History and Philosophy of Science,
Fanstasmineralogie: the gemstone artsGian Carlo Parodi, lecturer and mineralogist at the National Museum of Natural History of Paris.

More information HERE


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  • Lectures on Saturday, June 23, 2018

GEMOLOGY, A STORY OF STONES, FUN… AND PEOPLE

> By Michel Boudard, gemologist
> Language: French
> Schedule: Saturday at 11 am
> Duration: 1h

BOUDARD_illustrationThe purpose of the conference is to provide information on gemology and the enjoyment it offers. The usefulness of gemologists, and their place in the commercial circuits. It focuses on one aspect of the discipline, ‘expertise’.
Gemology draws its dynamism from new challenges related to the constant progress of the very present technology in stone processing and the use of newly exploited gems.
The lecturer, Michel Boudard, a former gem importer, is a graduate of the University of Nantes and a member of its Research Center in Gemology (C.R.G., Jean-Pierre Chenet Association).


BEAUTIFUL AND USEFUL: WHEN MINERALS INVITE US TO TRAVEL

> By Éloïse Gaillou, curator at the MINES ParisTech, Mineralogy Museum
GAILLLOU_Illustration-1024x1024> Language: French
> Schedule: Saturday at 1.30 pm
> Duration: 1h

From natural rocks to high-tech materials, through fine jewelry and space exploration, this conference invites you to understand the dialogue between minerals and their precious finished products.
During this conference, the minerals will take us through five trips:
-  1- Trip in the matter: behind the beauty of raw mineral hides an organization of  chemical elements of which it is constituted.
-  2- Trip in art: the elegance of natural stone inspires artists but also represents a form of natural art.
-  3- Trip in science and technology: current and high-tech items made from ores.
-  4- Trip into space: these meteorites that tell us the story of our solar system.
5- Trip in the jeweler’s art: the minerals and metals which constitute our ornaments.
From the aesthetic to the useful, minerals will never stop amazing us!


THEY DON’T GET MUCH BIGGER THAN THIS: GIANT GYPSUM CRYSTALS

> By Dr. Alexander E.S. van Driessche, Research Scientist, Institut des Science de la Terre, CNRS – Université de Grenoble, France
VAN_DRIESSCHE_Illustration-1024x682> Language: English
> Schedule: Saturday at 3 pm
> Duration: 1h

Gypsum is a naturally occurring mineral, which is often used in industrial processes (wall plaster), but provided the right geological conditions, it can grow into huge towering crystals more than 10 meters tall and weighing over 55 tones. Giant gypsum crystals can be found at different sites around the world, such as Spain, Chile or Mexico, where the Naica mine boasts the most exceptional ones (see picture). But these spectacular formations are not only appealing for their beauty; these places are also unique natural laboratories that reveal us secrets about mineral growth under conditions difficult to replicate within a typical laboratory setting because of the shear amount of time required to grow crystals of this enormous size. During this talk, several giant gypsum locations will be described and details about their possible formation mechanisms will be revealed.
Picture: Giant gypsum crystals inside of the Naica cave, Mexico. Note person for scale. © Alexander E.S. van Driessche


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  • Lectures on Sunday, June 24, 2018

‘HIDDEN TREASURES SCRAPED OUT OF THE DRAWERS’ OF THE CONFLUENCES MUSEUM

> By François Vigourouxassistant for management and conservation of museum collections at the Musée des Confluences, Lyon
VIGOUROUX_Illisutration-1024x768> Language: French
> Schedule: Sunday at 11 am
> Duration: 1h

Behind this title, who are the people who contributed to gather this collection? Enlightened amateurs? Associations, traders or experienced geologists? Since the 19th century, everyone has participated to enrich the mineralogy collection that has never stop growing. These collections stand ready to show us their wealth is their secrets.


METEORITES ARE DISPLAYED IN PARIS

> By Alain Carion, expert and meteorite dealer
CARION_Illsutration> Language: French
> Schedule: Sunday at 1.30 pm
> Durée : 1h

Recently two magnificent exhibitions were held, one in the botanic garden of the Museum of Natural History: ‘Meteorites: between Sky & Earth’, the other, ‘Impacts’, in the Jussieu Faculty of Science (collection of minerals from the Sorbonne). For those who have not had the chance to visit them, virtual guided tour of the most beautiful specimens.


OPAL:  MYSTERY AND FASCINATION

> By Boris Chauviré, professor-researcher at Grenoble University
CHAUVIRE_Illustration-1024x682> Language: French
> Schedule: Sunday at 3 pm
> Duration: 1h

Opal is known and appreciated since antiquity, and continues to fascinate enthusiasts and scientists. Its amorphous structure, its color schemes and their formations have remained a mystery for centuries. Many scientists, from Pliny the Elder to Des Cloizeaux, were interested in its properties. Nowadays, with the advent of new characterization technologies, some questions have been answered. But there are still many riddles on this unique material. From Earth to Mars, we will retrace the knowledge acquired over centuries, and we will look at the challenges that remain to better understand the opal.