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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database

Journal of Sedimentary Research (SEPM)


Journal of Sedimentary Petrology
Vol. 48 (1978)No. 3. (September), Pages 821-824

Color Differentiation in "Fried Egg" Stalagmites

Barry F. Beck


The yellow and white color zones in "fried egg" stalagmites, which are deposited from a single water source, are due to crystal texture differences, not chemical or mineralogic factors. The outer zone is porous calcite marked by intergrown crystals and fluid inclusions which reflect and refract the light yielding a white appearance. The inner core is continuous, translucent calcite yielding its true transmitted yellow color. The irregularities in the outer zone are probably caused by incomplete coalescence of the crystallite precursors. The variation may be related to the thickness of the water layer depositing the calcite.

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