Characteristics of Newly Discovered Amber from Phu Quoc, Vietnam


Le Ngoc Nang, Pham Trung Hieu, Lam Vinh Phat, Pham Minh Tien, Ho Nguyen Tri Man, and Ha Thuy Hang

The authors examine the gemological properties and commercial potential of a new source of amber, discovered in 2020 on the Vietnamese island of Phu Quoc. It is the only known amber locality in Vietnam so far. The Phu Quoc amber possesses reddish orange to orangy yellow hues and is transparent, with sizes up to 10 cm. The samples exhibited strong blue fluorescence under ultraviolet light (both long-wave and short-wave). Internally, they displayed disk-like inclusions and gas bubbles, but few botanical inclusions were found. Their characteristic FTIR peaks can be distinguished from those of amber found in other sources worldwide. Although amber from Phu Quoc is a recent discovery and has only been investigated in two small areas, its commercial potential is promising based on the samples’ quality and the wide distribution of the host rock on the island.

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