Minerals (Category A)

Talc

Talc is a clay mineral composed of hydrated magnesium silicate with the chemical formula H2Mg3(SiO3)4 or Mg3Si4O10(OH)2. In loose form, it, along with corn starch, is one of the most widely used substances known as baby powder (in the case of talc, often called simply talcum powder). It occurs as foliated to fibrous masses, and in an exceptionally rare crystal form. It has a perfect basal cleavage, and the folia are non-elastic, although slightly flexible. It is the softest known mineral and listed as 1 on the Mohs hardness scale. As such, it can be easily scratched by a fingernail. It has a specific gravity of 2.5–2.8, a clear or dusty luster, and is translucent to opaque. Talc is not soluble in water, but is slightly soluble in dilute mineral acids.[citation needed] Its color ranges from white to grey or green and it has a distinctly greasy feel. Its streak is white.

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