￼In May of 2014 the Quartermain Earth Science Centre and Department of Earth Sciences at UNB approved the addition of a new exhibit inside the Quartermain museum. The World of Minerals Exhibit includes two interactive series of displays exploring 1) mineral properties and 2) optical mineralogy. The first part of the exhibit (mineral properties) was opened to the public in September 2015. Located just inside the Quartermain Museum, visitors see a stunning mural behind a series of interactive displays embedded on a custom designed cabinet with a colourful textured surface and several interactive displays showing each mineral property. Inside the cabinet are numerous drawers with hands-on mobile games that compliment the tabletop displays. Side display cases show beautiful specimens from the silicate, non-silicate, non-silicate ore and radioactive groups of minerals.
The Quartermain Museum celebrated the completion of the first half of the World of Minerals exhibits by September 10th with a “ribbon-cutting” soft launch on September 18th, 2015. After a short welcome and opening speech greatly thanking CGF and those involved with the design and building of the displays, students, faculty and staff enjoyed interacting with the new addition to the museum. Comments such as “very interactive”, “a fantastic fresh new addition to the museum”, and “this will help me learn – can’t wait to see more!” were well received.
￼￼Since the launch just under 600 students (~60 educators) and over 500 visitors have interacted with the new display. In general younger students are attracted to the “Am I a Mineral”, “Other Properties” and “Specific Gravity” tabletop displays as well as the mineral games available on the tablet. Older students and adults spend more time with the information on mineral properties and groups, and enjoy the variety of unique specimens. Mostly visiting families and undergraduate students have independently played the mineral games available in the cabinet drawers. The displays and games have also purposefully been used to compliment undergraduate studies within the department. Most pleasing was to witness on several occasions undergraduate science, forestry and geoengineering students bring non-Earth Science/engineering friends and relatives to the museum, providing educated tours of the minerals displays.