A new copper mineral found near the Atacama Desert in Chile has been named after UWS Parramatta's Emeritus Professor Peter Leverett.
But the bright green, brittle crystal rhombs now known as Leverettite are far from kryptonite for this chemistry professor, who has taught at the university's School of Science and Health for 25 years.
He was thrilled with the International Mineralogical Association Naming Commission's decision in May to call the mineral in honour of his teaching and research work.
"It was rewarding to realise that the geochemical and mineralogical research which my colleagues and I and our research students have been doing over the past many years at UWS is held in such high regard by the international scientific community," he said.
Professor Leverett said new minerals like Leverettite— which was discovered at an old copper mine in 2012 — form when copper ore is recrystallised with chlorine, water, zinc and other minerals.
He said that more than 100 new minerals were described and named around the world each year.
"This had cobalt in it, which was quite unusual," he said. "As my colleague Professor Pete Williams says, we're in the truth game.
"We investigate and come up with a result and that's it. Sometimes the result is a bit unusual and you have to argue the case. That's why these new minerals create such a stir around the world, because no one expected to find them."