Aquamarine, named for the Latin phrase "water of the sea", is the blue to blue-green variety Beryl. Beryl also contains other gem varieties, including Emerald, and some lesser known varieties such as Morganite and Heliodor. Aquamarine ranges in color from a faint light blue to blue and bluish-green, with lighter colored stones being the more common type. Light green Beryl can be transformed into Aquamarine if heated to 750º F (400º C). The green hues in most Aquamarine can also be removed through heat treatment.
Light blue, transparent and clear euhedral crystals of aquamarine occur in abundance in the gem bearing pegmatites of Gilgit, Skardu and Hunza areas. Morganite, the pinkish red variety of beryl, is also associated with aquamarine in the gem bearing pegamatites of Shigar (Hunza) area. The important deposits of aquamarine are located in Shengus, Dusso, Heramosh, Iskere, Tistung and Shigar areas. Exploratory mining operations by the defunct Gemstone Corporation of Pakistan in the seventies in Shengus and Dusso areas established swarms of pegamatites yielding an average annual production of about 32,000
carats. It is estimated that a production target of 200,000 carats of aquamarine can be conveniently achieved.
Deeper color aquamarine is reported from District Chitral. The area merits exploration from the viewpoint that good quality aquamarine, tourmaline and kunzite bearing pegmatites are found in Afghanistan just across the border