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♦ GEMSTONE STORY
Amber is organic resin or “tree sap”. It is often found in layers, pods and lenses often associated with coal seams. The major coal deposits of the earth were formed during periods when the earth’s temperatures were warmer than today’s. These were periods of explosive organic growth.
As Amber forms, it grades from tree sap to copal and then amber by a natural slow cooking process. Copal is an immature form of Amber. It is still volatile-rich and sticky. Sort of like an uncooked cheese soufflé. As you cook it and the oils move out, it dries, thickens and hardens. It is a gradual process. At the point you unearth the material it could be at any stage of the process as geological time is measured in millions of years. The temperature and pressure during burial in a rock formation also played a role in the maturity of the resin products we find on the Earth’s surface today.
Most documented Amber deposits were formed within the last 90 million years. Amber and associated coal deposits were formed by an assortment of decomposed plants in bogs, swamps or forests, in coastal areas or inland marshes. Each deposit underwent a unique sequence of events during its formational histories.
Temperatures and pressures typically increased with depth of burial in sedimentary basins. Under an influx of clastic sediments and volcanics, the volatiles including organic resins are trapped as the carbon rich plant matter breaks down to form coal. Impermeable layers of ash and fine grained clay rich sediments stop the migration and contain the volatile rich resins which form pockets, seams, lenses or layers.
Over time these pockets mature or cure and become harder as the volatile phase dissipates leaving a hard resinous material. The transition from what we call tree sap to copal to Amber is continuously gradational and all stages of this transition are present in the fossil record.
In Indonesia, there are thousands of coal deposits. There is a great range of maturities of coal in different deposits from low grade/low calorie lignite to high grade/high calorie anthracite. A year 2000 estimate by the Indonesian Department of Energy and Mineral Resources stated Sumatra had reserves of approximately 17.8 billion metric tons of coal. Extensive coal should relate to an abundance of Amber but much of the Amber which I had previously seen, was black or brown and muddy looking.
• Approx Stone Size :
(1)37*29*6 (2)38*38*6 (3)37*27*5 (4)44*27*8 (5)49*28*8 (6)49*33*10 (7)46*36*8 (8)46*33*6 (9)41*32*8 mm