Pearls – solid mineral formation round or irregular shape. Appears inside the marine shell as a result of biogenic processes. It is a precious material from which jewelry is made.
The most outstanding pearl instance, ever found in the natural environment, is the pearl of Lao Tzu. Other Its name Pearl Allah. Its weight is 34 kg, length – 67 cm, width – 30 cm.
The formation of pearls in natural conditions is an extremely complex process marked by a wide range of physical and chemical reactions occurring in the shell’s body.
Pearl formation is a protective reaction of the body of the mollusk. It is activated when a foreign body falls through the open sinks of the shell inside. It can be a grain, small pebbles, algae or something else. In order to eat, and also move around the sea, the oyster is forced to discover the sash of their sink. It is at the time of discovery, under the action of water pressure and pushing force, outside the house penetrates the house.
Mollusk body is extremely gentle, equipped with a variety of sensitive receptors. The presence of such features makes it use a protective mechanism that does not give a foreign body to cause it harm.
- Foreign body settles on one of the parts of the mollusk. After which it begins to gradually dive into the fabric. As a result, a slight recess on the body surface is obtained. The formation of the so-called pearl pouch occurs.
- Foreign inclusion can have sharp faces and angles that annoy and even wound the gentle body of mussels. Irritation factor determines the launch of biological processes leading to the production of special cells by the body.
- These cells are sent to the place where the alien item is. A special enzyme contained in cells causes them to curb the sand with mineral organic layers. Enveloping occurs gradually, layer behind the layer. After frozen, a solid surface is formed. So the pearl is born.
The shape of the pearl depends on the configuration of the sandbank, which came to the inner mollusk environment. If it has sufficiently smooth outlines, the pearl will turn out in the form of the right ball. In other cases, the case of an incorrect or oblong form falls inside the shell. The coating of the future pearl of the mineral organic layer will be made in accordance with the form of the foreign body. As a result, it may turn out a pearl with a curvilinear surface.
The degree of symmetry form of the pearl affects the location of the foreign body. In some cases, it can settle on the inner side of one of the sinks of the shell, which leads to the splicing of pearls with the surface of the sash. Such pearls becomes one with a mollusk shelter and is not a valuable material.
Depending on the variety of mollusk and its habitat, the qualitative characteristics of the pearl, which he grows. Differences can be observed in color, form, pearl texture, as well as in the presence or absence of other individual characteristics.
The extraction of pearls grown in nature inside the oyster is an extremely laborious process. Usually the mollusk sink lies on the surface of the seabed. For its prey, it is necessary to go down to the very bottom, which can be dangerous to the unprepared miner.
In addition, pearls in mussels grows very long. The process of formation of the mineral layer around the foreign body flows at the cellular level. To achieve a pearl acceptable size may be needed some years. Modern technologies apply to facilitate the production of precious mineral. Technique allows you to dive into a big depth and stay there longer than the usual.
There are farms involved in breeding oysters. The purpose of their activities may be to obtain a food product or artificial pearl.
Multidium breeding technology implies The use of artificial or natural reservoir. In the second embodiment, a certain section of the water space is composed of the main. In the case of the breeding of marine clams, a part of the sea coastal space is used, as it is almost impossible to create similar conditions in the separation from the sea.
The size of each individual pearl depends on the size of the mollusk shell, which grows it. In addition, the physical state of oyster affects the magnitude. If it is healthy and strong, the process of formation of pearl stone will flow faster, with a better result.
Some molluscular representatives are incapable of a long-term foreign inclusion enveloping process. They do not have enough resources necessary for this, which causes their death. In the conditions of farm breeding, such cases are unprofitable, since the mussel may die without having time to form a full pearl.
Physical properties of stone
In the list of physical properties of pearls, the main:
- The composition of the shell.
The most common color combination of the pearl is white color with a brilliant pearlescent tint. However, there are also colored pearls of pink, blue, purple, brown, orange shade. The color characteristic is the determining indicator on which the price of the product depends. The most rare and expensive pearls are blue and blue. It grows mollusk heliotis.
The form of each individual pearl is a factor directly affecting its value. A more correct form is much more expensive than the wrong. In addition, pearl formations are found, the form of which does not allow them to be used in any way. In this case, they are recognized by defective material and utilizes.
The cheapest and affordable is the pearl produced by freshwater mussels. Its cost is extremely low, but the quality is mediocre.
The main characteristic of pearls is the composition of his shell. A distinctive feature of this material is a special chemical composition, its main components – calcium carbonate and konchioline. Due to the combination of these elements, pearls is half a mineral, half an organic formation, which emphasizes its uniqueness.
Places of prey
Mussels growing inside their pearl shells dwell in warm nautical and ocean waters. They can be found near the coast of South America, Australia, Japan, India and others.
The average depth of their permanent stay is 30-35 m, however, representatives of this type of marine inhabitants are found at significantly greater depth. During his life, the oyster can move over long distances, despite the limited ability to move. In most cases, the mollusk attaches its house to any solid surface: stone or coral reef. In this position, he may be quite a long time.
Search and mining pearl mussels are made on medium depth – up to 20 m. In most cases, professional divers will be raised from the bottom, which are immersed in water without special equipment. This work is associated with large physical exertion and the high probability of harm to health, which is one of the factors determining the cost of pearls. The outer surface of the sink of some mollusks has a specific color merging with the environment. This greatly complicates their search.
The extraction of wild oysters is a factor negatively affecting the ecosystem of the underwater world. Pearls of proper quality are quite rare. From ten oysters contain a pearl can only one.
Those mollusks that do not have gems die as a result of the autopsy of their shell. It suffers from this numerical population of the form, which makes them go into deeper water.
Scope of application
Mostly pearls are used for the manufacture of various jewelry. From it do:
- Individual Products.
Decorations that consist of a certain amount of pearls are considered the most expensive. For example, for the manufacture of beads or necklace, stones are selected similar in size, shape and shade. Production of such a selection is the work process, since there are no two absolutely identical pearls in nature.
Products containing 1 or 2 pearls are a little cheaper, but the material from which the frame has been performed on the final cost. Platinum or gold rims framing the pearl are an order of magnitude higher.
It is believed that pearls possesses magic properties and can influence the physical or psychological state of a person. However, real facts confirming such conclusions were not identified.
If we talk about the effect of pearl ornaments per person, it is worth noting the following: the presence of such a refined and expensive decoration produced from a natural material raised from the seabed, forms a special person’s status and increases self-esteem.
The carrier of such a decoration can feel special, standing out against other people. Based on this, it can be concluded that the product from pearls is able to influence the internal self-satisfaction of the person. This effect is due to its emotional background, but not the magical properties of the natural mineral organic compound.
How to distinguish natural pearls from fake, look in the video below.