Characterization of Blue Sapphires from the Mogok Stone Tract, Mandalay Region, Burma (Myanmar)


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Iridescent arrowhead needles and thin film, a characteristic inclusion found in Mogok Burmese blue sapphires. Oblique illumination, field of view 1.80 mm. Photo: C. Khowpong © GIA.

The Mogok Stone Tract of central Myanmar (Burma) is one of the world’s most famed sources of colored stones, particularly ruby, sapphire, and spinel. Researchers from GIA’s Bangkok laboratory recently investigated 69 blue sapphires from the northern, western, eastern and northwestern areas of Mogok. They performed microscopic examination, FTIR and UV-Vis-NIR spectroscopy, and chemical analysis by LA-ICP-MS to establish identifying characteristics and properties of blue sapphires from Mogok.

The results are available in a study titled “Characterization of blue sapphires from the Mogok Stone Tract, Mandalay region, Burma (Myanmar).” The authors concluded that blue sapphires from Mogok possess a variety of internal characteristics and chemistry features that may support their identification as Burmese.