My Favorite Crystal

[Meervelt crystal]

The Belgian National Committee for Crystallography has organized since 2000 a national crystal growing competition for pupils in the secondary schools (ages 12-17 years). During a period of five weeks the pupils should grow single crystals of a compound that is sent to the registered schools by one of our sponsors. On the website of the competition more information is given on crystals in general, the compound to crystallize and how to grow single specimens. The pupils are of course guided by their science teacher and in case of problems they can contact a local member of the national committee. A jury judges the quality of the crystals based on their mass, transparency, faces etc... Each year I am surprised at the quality of the submitted crystals, which makes the judging of more than 200 crystals not an easy task! So it is with pleasure that I nominate one of the prize-winning crystals from a previous edition as my favorite crystal! The crystal shown here is a beautiful alum crystal crystallized by a group of three 15 year-old pupils of the Athénée Royal de Bruxelles II during the edition 2007. The size is about 2 cm and the quality is almost perfect!

Many countries have similar crystal growing competitions, so IYCr2014 is the perfect time to organize a World Crystal Growing Competition to bring as many young people as possible in contact with our fascinating world of crystals!

Luc Van Meervelt