Main research directions
The Mineralogical Museum is currently pursuing 3 main research directions:
- characterization of new natural inorganic substances (new mineral discoveries)
- Search and characterization of meteorites
- Development of new identification methods for precious stones, gemstones and pearls.
All publications concerning our research results are compiled in a chronological list.
New Mineral Discoveries
Every year, around a hundred new, previously unknown minerals are discovered worldwide. Finding and recognizing a new mineral species is only the first step in a scientific recognition process. First, the chemical composition and internal structure (the crystal structure) as well as a variety of other chemical and physical parameters are determined.
The Mineralogical Museum has already participated in a first search expedition to the Mongolian Gobi Desert in 1993 and in an expedition to the Sahara of the Republic of Niger in 1997. In the years 2000 to 2004 there were several search expeditions to the Libyan Sahara, together with Libyan institutions. Initiated by the Mineralogical Museum Hamburg, a first German meteorite expedition to Antarctica took place in the Antarctic summer 2007/2008. In 2010 an expedition to the Rub al-Khali was undertaken in cooperation with the Environmental Agency Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
- The meteorite collection and own finds of the Mineralogical Museum
- New meteorite acquisitions of the museum
- Meteorite expeditions
The chronological list of publications provides an overview of the scientific and popular scientific activities of the Mineralogical Museum.
Due to a lack of personnel and financial resources, only a small part of the scientific collections of the museum has been digitally recorded so far. This includes the database of the museum's meteorite collection, which includes numerous photographic documents and is accessible and searchable online.
The type mineral catalog Germany was initiated in the Mineralogical Museum Hamburg, designed by Mr. Reinhardt Kurtz. It has been maintained and cared for here for several years.
The illustrated catalog names all type minerals (reference samples of the original description), the corresponding museums and the responsible scientists. The type minerals are described in detail. Furthermore, the catalog offers a georeference file for free download, which links all mentioned type localities as well as the location of each collection with GoogleEarth.