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What is the chemical composition of sand?

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Quick Answer

The chemical composition of sand is primarily SiO2, or silica. Silica, which is also named as quartz, is a type of mineral that makes up most of the sand types like beach sand.

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Full Answer

Quartz, which does not break easily, can be found in various types of rocks. Granite, which is a plutonic rock, and sandstone, which is a sediment rock, both have a high quartz content. Chemical and mechanical weathering results in sand. Whether a sand grain is rounded and smooth or angular depends on how it traveled downstream.

In the United States, sand grains are divided into five types according to their size: very fine, fine, medium, coarse and very coarse.

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