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The Refractive Indices of Common Gemstones

All materials refract light (alter its angle). The amount by which light is refracted is an important feature of every gemstone. The measure of a material's refractivity is known as its refractive index or R.I.  Without going too deeply into physics, light travels at different speeds through different media. When light passes from one medium to another, its path is altered (bent) and it is said to be diffracted.

Actinolite 1.614 - 1.642
Albite Feldspar 1.525 - 1.536
Almandite Garnet 1.790 - 1.790
Amber 1.540 - 1.540
Andalusite 1.634 - 1.643
Andradite Garnet (Demantoid) 1.875 - 1.875
Apatite 1.642 - 1.646
Benitoite 1.757 - 1.804
Beryl 1.577 - 1.583
Brazillanite 1.602 - 1.621
Calcite 1.486 - 1.658
Chalcedony 1.535 - 1.539
Chrysoberyl (Alexandrite) 1.746 - 1.755
Coral 1.486 - 1.658
Corundum (Sapphire only) 1.762 - 1.770
Cubic Zirconium Oxide 2.177 - 2.177
Danburite  1.630 - 1.636
Diamond 2.417 - 2.417
Diopside 1.675 - 1.701
Dioptase  1.655 - 1.708
Emerald 1.580 - 1.580
Fluorite 1.434 - 1.434
G.G.G 2.030 - 2.030
Glass 1.440 - 1.900
Hematite  2.940 - 3.220
Idocrase 1.713 - 1.718
Iolite (Cordierite) 1.542 - 1.551
Ivory 1.540 - 1.540
Jadeite 1.660 - 1.680
Jet 1.660 - 1.660
Kornerupine 1.667 - 1.680
Kyanite 1.716 - 1.731
Labradorite Feldspar 1.559 - 1.568
Lapis-Lazull (Lazurite) 1.500 - 1.500
Malachite  1.660 - 1.910
Microcline Feldspar 1.522 - 1.530
Moldavite 1.500 - 1.500
Nephrite 1.606 - 1.632
Obsidian  1.500 - 1.500
Oligoclase Feldspar 1.539 - 1.547
Opal 1.450 - 1.450
Orthoclase Feldspar (Moonstone) 1.518 - 1.526
Peridot  1.654 - 1.690
Plastic  1.460 - 1.700
Pyrope Garnet 1.746 - 1.746
Quartz  1.544 - 1.553
Rhodochrosite 1.597 - 1.817
Rhodolite Garnet 1.760 - 1.760
Rhodonite 1.730 - 1.740
Sapphire 1.670 - 1.770
Scapolite 1.550 - 1.572
Serpentine 1.560 - 1.570
Shell  1.530 - 1.686
Sinhalite 1.668 - 1.707
Sodalite 1.483 - 1.483
Spessartite Garnet  1.810 - 1.810
Sphene  1.900 - 2.034
Spinel  1.718 - 1.718
Spodumene (Kunzite) 1.660 - 1.676
Strontium Titanate 2.409 - 2.409
Synthetic Corundum  1.762 - 1.770
Synthetic Emerald (Flux) 1.561 - 1.564
Synthetic Emerald (Hydro) 1.568 - 1.573
Synthetic Moissanite 2.650 - 2.650
Synthetic Rutile 2.616 - 2.903
Synthetic Spinel 1.730 - 1.730
TL Grossularite Garnet 1.720 - 1.720
Topaz (Blue, White) 1.619 - 1.627
Tourmaline 1.624 - 1.644
TP Grossularite Garnet (Hessonite) 1.740 - 1.740
Turquoise 1.610 - 1.650
Verdite  1.580 - 1.580
Y.A.G. 1.833 - 1.833
Zircon (High) 1.925 - 1.984
Zircon (Low)  1.810 - 1.815
Zircon (Medium) 1.875 - 1.905
Zoisite (Tanzanite) 1.691 - 1.704

 Note: The Reflective Index may vary on the surface polishing quality.

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