Shortcut Navigation:
Ores from Hot Water

Ores from hot water

Ores from hot water

  • Exhibition Text

    • Driven by heat from bodies of molten rock in the crust, hot water circulates through cracks, dissolving minerals in the rocks through which it passes. As the water moves into cooler rocks, the dissolved minerals precipitate and accumulate in fractures and cavities. Many metallic ore deposits, such as those represented in the samples shown here, form in this way.

      Show more
  • For Educators

    • Topic: Earth Science

      Subtopic: Minerals and Resources

      Keywords: Hydrogeology, Magmas, Metals, Natural resources

      Audience: General

In This Section

Giant Quartz Vein

Giant quartz vein

This boulder of nearly pure quartz formed when hot silica-bearing waters flowing through a fracture deposited quartz.

Ores in Granite

Ores in granite

Water leached the metal molybdenum out of hot granite and deposited it in cooler granite, in veins that can be seen to crisscross the rock.

Silver-Rich Veins

Silver-rich veins

The veins in this rock contain white calcite, milky quartz, and microscopic silver, cobalt, and arsenic-rich minerals, which make up the metallic part of the veins.

American Museum of Natural History

Central Park West at 79th Street
New York, NY 10024-5192
Phone: 212-769-5100

Open daily from 10 am - 5:45 pm
except on Thanksgiving and Christmas
Maps and Directions

Enlighten Your Inbox

Stay informed about Museum news and research, events, and more!