The word "calcite" is derived from the Latin word calx and the Greek word chalix, which means lime. Calcite mineral is found in limestone and marble. It is colorless or white when pure, but due to the impurities present in it, this mineral can be found in many colors, like red, yellow, green, honey, pink, lavender, black, brown, or blue.
This mineral can appear transparent, translucent, or opaque. Calcite can have luster that can be vitreous to dull, and many crystals, especially the colorless ones, are vitreous, while the fine grained mostly are seen dull. It can be scratched readily by a knife blade or a geologic pick.
These were the physical properties of calcite. But, most calcite uses can be attributed to its distinguishing properties, like it has a good hardness level, is readily dissolvable in certain materials, and has healing properties.
Uses in Construction Industry
Construction industry is the primary consumer of calcite in the form of limestone and marble. Such rocks have been used as dimension stones for making mortar for thousands of years. Limestone blocks were used for making primary construction material while making the pyramids.
Now, rough and polished limestone and marble is used for making prestige construction monuments. For making modern buildings, calcite in the form of limestone and marble is used for producing cement and concrete. Such materials are easy to mix and transport, and are used to make a slurry mixture that hardens fasts and is very durable.
Marble is an attractive construction material that has been used to make many monuments and sculptures throughout the history. The lack of significant porosity of marble allows it to stand up well to extreme temperatures and due to its low hardness level, one can easily carve it.
For Making Medicines
Calcite or calcium carbonate, which is derived from very pure marbles or limestone, is also used for making medicines. This is one of the common uses of calcite. It has acid neutralizing property.
Hence, when it is mixed with sugar and flavoring, the chewable tablets of calcite help in neutralizing stomach acids. Such medicines are known as antacids, that help greatly to treat stomach problems and other ailments.
The crystal healing stones of calcite come in many colors, like green, peach, blue, and some are clear glassy.
Pulverized marble or limestone is used as a dietary supplement that is added to animal feed. Chickens and cattle need a calcium rich diet, hence small amounts of calcite is added to their feed to increase their calcium intake.
Pulverized limestone is used as mine safety dust. This is a non-inflammable substance that is sprayed onto the walls and roofs of underground coal mines so that the amount of coal dust, which can increase explosion hazard sticking to the walls is less. The white color also helps in illumination inside a mine.
Due to the amazing properties and the different varieties of calcite, one can find it being used for animals as a dietary supplement to healing stomach ailments in human beings.