Click here to skip to the content

Arie Ruitenberg and Brian Roulston

Only a few thousand naturally occurring minerals have been named. Most people are familiar with common varieties like Quartz, Calcite, and Gypsum. But there are less familiar minerals like Heulandite and Sphaerocobaltite. Minerals are named for the chemical composition (like Manganite for its manganese content), where they are found (like Franklinite from Franklin Furnace, New Jersey), or the people who found them (like Cleavelandite, named after Parker Cleaveland, a professor of geology and mineralogy at Bowdoin College in Maine during the early 1800s). Not often do geologists have new minerals named in their honour. Two minerals are named for geologists in New Brunswick, Ruitenbergite and Brianroulstonite. Both are rare borate minerals, found in the evaporite deposits of the potash mine near Penobsquis. Ruitenbergite was named in honour of Arie Ruitenberg, a geologist with the New Brunswick Department of Natural Resources, and one of the first to recognize the potential for potash discovery in the region. Brianroulstanite was named for Brian Roulston, geologist at the Potash Company of Saskatchewan mine near Penobsquis, in recognition of his work on the geology of evaporite deposits.