Rhyolite
Rhyolite is an igneous, volcanic (extrusive) rock, of felsic (silicon-rich) composition (typically >69% silica). It may have any texture from aphanitic to porphyritic. The mineral assemblage is usually quartz, alkali feldspar and plagioclase (in a ratio > 1:2 ). Biotite and hornblende are common accessory minerals. Rhyolite can be considered as the extrusive equivalent to the plutonic granite rock, and consequently, outcroppings of it often bear a resemblance to granite. Due to their high content of silica and low iron and magnesium contents, rhyolite melts are highly polymerized and form highly viscous lavas. They can also occur as breccias or in volcanic plugs and dikes. Rhyolites that cool too quickly to grow crystals form a natural glass or vitrophyre, also called obsidian. Slower cooling forms microscopic crystals in the lava and results in textures such as flow foliations, spherulitic, nodular, and lithophysal structures. Some rhyolite is highly vesicular pumice. Many eruptions of rhyolite are highly explosive and the deposits may consist of volcaniclastic tephra or of ignimbrites.


Photographed by Michael P. Klimetz

Castle Rock

COLORADO
Photographed by Michael P. Klimetz

Helena

Lewis and Clark County
MONTANA
Photographed by Michael P. Klimetz


[Porphyritic - Taum Sauk Formation - Proterozoic (1.4 bybp)]

Taum Sauk Mountain
Pilot Knob

Iron County
MISSOURI
Photographed by Michael P. Klimetz


[Porphyritic - Taum Sauk Formation - Proterozoic (1.4 bybp)]

Taum Sauk Mountain
Pilot Knob

Iron County
MISSOURI
Photographed by Michael P. Klimetz


[Porphyritic with Flow Structure - Taum Sauk Formation - Proterozoic (1.4 bybp)]

Taum Sauk Mountain
Pilot Knob

Iron County
MISSOURI
Photographed by Michael P. Klimetz


[Porphyritic with Flow Structure - Taum Sauk Formation - Proterozoic (1.4 bybp)]

Taum Sauk Mountain
Pilot Knob

Iron County
MISSOURI
Photographed by Michael P. Klimetz


[Porphyritic with Flow Structure - Taum Sauk Formation - Proterozoic (1.4 bybp)]

Taum Sauk Mountain
Pilot Knob

Iron County
MISSOURI
Photographed by Michael P. Klimetz


[Porphyritic with Flow Structure - Taum Sauk Formation - Proterozoic (1.4 bybp)]

Taum Sauk Mountain
Pilot Knob

Iron County
MISSOURI
Photographed by Michael P. Klimetz


[Porphyritic with Flow Structure - Taum Sauk Formation - Proterozoic (1.4 bybp)]

Taum Sauk Mountain
Pilot Knob

Iron County
MISSOURI
Photographed by Michael P. Klimetz


[Porphyritic with Flow Structure - Taum Sauk Formation - Proterozoic (1.4 bybp)]

Taum Sauk Mountain
Pilot Knob

Iron County
MISSOURI
Photographed by Michael P. Klimetz


[Porphyritic with Flow Structure - Taum Sauk Formation - Proterozoic (1.4 bybp)]

Taum Sauk Mountain
Pilot Knob

Iron County
MISSOURI