The spectroscope




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The spectroscope is an important tool of the modern gemmologist. Although I need to ad, that this concerns the infrared or near infrared spectroscopes. A handheld spectroscope for visible light shows the absorption lines of the elements involved in producing its color. It helps to separate ruby (chrome) against red or pink sapphire (iron) to name only one example.

Hand spectroscope with fixed slit
Hand spectroscope
Typical absorption-lines and absorption-bands

This tool requires a good training and an appropriate light source. Colorless stones show no absorption spectrum. The sunlight shows a typical absorption spectrum, the Fraunhofersche lines. Fluorescence lamps show an emission spectrum. For demonstration you may examinate besides gemstones also liquids or flames colored by metalsalts.

The spectroscope can be focused. This is necessary as the slit type of spectroscope can't show the whole length of the scale in focus at once. You may choos between the spectroscop without or with a wavelength scale. The wavelengtscale is adjusted to the yellow D-Line of natrium at 589.3 nm. The wavelengts of the absorption spectrum allow to identify the coloring elements. Table of elements and their spectral lines
The brochure Blue chart - tables of gemstone identification. Edition 2012 with 79 color absorption spectrumsTables of gemstone identification by Hervé Nicolas Lazzarelli is recommended for its over all presentation of gemmological data and its listings of spectrums in full color.

Handspectroscope with wavelength scale
Handspectroscope with wavelength scale

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