A Refractometer can measure the critical angle of a gem allowing light to form a shadow line on the calibrated scale of the refractometer and you can directly read the R.I. (Refractive Index) from the scale. A Refractometer can determine the type of mineral or gem by precisely measuring the stone's refractive index and comparing that number with the inherent refractive index of the mineral. The RI of singly refractive (isotropic) and doubly refractive (anisotropic) stones can also be determined.
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