Michigan Man Discovers Glowing Fluorescent Rocks Called ‘Yooperlites’ [VIDEO]
A Michigan man has made a rather unique discover along the shore of Lake Superior -- glowing, fluorescent rocks which he has dubbed 'Yooperlites.'
Erik Rintamaki, a gem and mineral dealer, made the discovery in Michigan's Upper Peninsula while hunting for rocks. The glowing rocks give off an eerie light and appear to be partially molten rock.
Rintamaki named the rocks 'Yooperlites' to pay homage to the residents of the U.P. who have long been called Yoopers as a term of endearment.
They determined the rocks are "syenite clasts containing fluorescent sodalite." To break this down, the rock is made up of fragments of coarse-grained igneous rocks, with a similar composition to granite. What makes these rocks special is the inclusion of fluorescent sodalite. The mineral sodalite will fluoresce under longwave ultraviolet illumination, creating the glowing yellowish orange veins of Yooperlites. Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) analysis at Michigan Technological University confirmed the fluorescent mineral is sodalite. While syenites are common in Michigan, these are the first documented sodalites found in the state of Michigan.
Erik Rintamaki now books tours to help people find their own Yooperlites along the shores of the Upper Peninsula.