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All the photos on this website were taken by me unless indicated otherwise. I’ve used a limited number of photos because I have a book under way which will show the full range of my Australian rocks, and I don’t want to give too much away yet!

Many of the rocks shown are quite small, the smallest being only about 15mm across. Many of the shots are close ups of interesting areas on larger rocks. I have tried to indicate the size of the area being imaged, but in many cases I can’t actually find that area because it is very small and when the fluorescing area is magnified it can look quite different from what the naked eye sees. Frustrating!

You will notice that there are very few long-wave (UVA) photos. Long-wave fluorescence in most of the Flinders rocks is almost the same as mid-wave (UVB), only dimmer. However, you’ll see a big difference between short-wave (UVC) and mid-wave images. Fluorescence under short-wave is usually brighter and more colourful than under mid-wave. Of all fluorescent minerals, about 85% are best under short-wave and many respond only to only one wavelength.

Phosphorescence images often bear no resemblance to the fluorescence that ceased when the UV lamp was turned off. Occasionally a phosphorescence image can be more appealing than the related fluorescence one. Phosphorescence can be orders of magnitude dimmer than the preceding fluorescence, so the images tend to be of lower or much lower quality.  Minerals vary greatly in the brightness of their fluorescence and phosphorescence, so if you wonder why all my images tend to be uniformly bright, refer to the section on Photographing Fluorescence and Phosphorescence on the FLUORESCENCE page where I explain this apparent paradox.

At Puttapa and Third Plain there are so many fluorescence and phosphorescence colours that I don’t really know yet what the minerals are.  Red SW fluorescence will mostly be calcite or dolomite.  Deep blue/mauve SW fluorescence at Puttapa and Third Plain will mostly be smithsonite and green will be willemite. Blue SW fluorescence is probably willemite.  Yellow fluorescence MW is probably willemite.  Green, yellow and blue phosphorescence (SW & MW) is also probably willemite.  We can only be sure of what minerals are present using advanced and expensive techniques performed in an appropriate laboratory.  We do have some preliminary analysis that appears to show that most of the colours at Puttapa and Third Plain (apart from the calcite that fluoresces red, of course) are probably willemite with a variety of impurities (activators).  We can get some clues from lists of minerals said to have been identified at a site, but without proper analysis we can’t be sure. To date, not much laboratory work has been done identifying Australian fluorescing minerals. But not knowing what minerals are glowing doesn’t detract from the beauty of the fluorescence or phosphorescence.

Specimens collected from Beltana Mine, Puttapa Zinc Deposit, North Flinders Ranges, South Australia. . • Pronounce it PUTT-A-PA, PUTT as in BUTT . . NOT Put-apa, Poo-tapa or Pew-tapa!

Specimens collected from Third Plain Zinc Prospect, Northern Flinders Ranges, South Australia

Specimens collected from various places in the North Flinders region of South Australia

Specimens collected from the Olary Province, South Australia

Specimens collected from various places in South Australia

Specimens collected from the Broken Hill region of NSW.

Specimens collected from other places throughout NSW.

Specimens collected or purchased overseas. (Small sample only)