The elasticity of minerals is central to our understanding of the structure and properties of the Earth, and other planets. In the last half-century, and in particular within the last 15 years, there have been many new developments in the experimental methods used to determine the elastic properties of minerals. Not only have new techniques become available, but the pressure and temperature ranges over which they can be applied have been greatly extended and the precision and accuracy of the results have been significantly improved. Given these rapid advances in measurement techniques we provide a brief guide to the theory of the elasticity of minerals, and we review and compare the physical principles and the capabilities of the experimental techniques now available.

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