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Fontsante Mine, Tanneron, Var, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, France
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Proustite
Fontsante Mine, Tanneron, Var, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, France

Photo: 2005 M. Kampf
Latitude: 43°32'44"N
Longitude: 6°50'15"E
 
Name(s) in local language(s): Ancienne mine de fluorine de Fontsante
 
A former fluorite mine, started in 1919 and closed in 1987. This large deposit is composed of 20 parallel veins hosted in gneisses. Here are their names from north to south:
- "Lenté" group (from A to E)
- "Nord" group (from 0 to 4)
- Saint-Barthélémy
- Saint-Augustin (known for its sulphides)
- Blanc
- Rouge
- Sainte-Barbe
- Clet
- "Sud" group (from 1 to 3)
- Figuier (known for its dark green cubic fluorites)

All these veins were operated underground by the SECME (Pechiney) company which produced here almost 2 000 000 tons of CaF2 ore.

According to P. Detang (1981), 4 mineralizing stages are known:
1) faulting of gneisses then low filling of cracks by purple and/or green fluorite (sometimes as "aztec pyramids") with white quartz.

2) Large filling of the main veins by green and/or white fluorite with sellaïte

3) deposits (in vugs of the previous stage) of yellow/colorless cubic fluorite with baryte and some sulphides such as galena, sphalerite, pyrite, marcasite, etc...

4) Very low deposits of quartz and carbonates (calcite, dolomite, ankerite...)

The finest fluorite specimens of Provence come from this famous deposit. It is also well known for its barytes and its silver minerals (proustite, acanthite, stephanite, etc...) Today, all adits are closed but some large dumps and many outcrops still remain.

Mineral List

Acanthite
Ankerite
Arsenic
Arsenolite
Arsenopyrite
Baryte
Bournonite
Calcite
Cerussite
Chalcopyrite
Coquimbite
Dolomite
Fluorite
Galena
Graphite
Jarosite
Kaolinite
Malachite
Marcasite
Melanterite
'Ozocerite'
Paracoquimbite
Proustite
Pyrite
Pyromorphite
Pyrrhotite
Quartz
Sellaite
Sphalerite
Stephanite
Sulphur
Tetrahedrite


32 entries listed. 31 valid minerals.

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References

- Mari G. (1979): Mines et minéraux de la Provence cristalline (Maures.Esterel.Tanneron). Ed. SERRES.(in French)
- Mari, G. (1977). "Fontsante (Var)." Minéraux et Fossiles, 25, 36-45.
- Mari, G. (2002). "La mine de Fontsante." Le Règne Minéral(43), 38-60.


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Copyright © Jolyon Ralph and Ida Chau 1993-2014. Site Map. Locality, mineral & photograph data are the copyright of the individuals who submitted them. Site hosted & developed by Jolyon Ralph. Mindat.org is an online information resource dedicated to providing free mineralogical information to all. Mindat relies on the contributions of thousands of members and supporters. Mindat does not offer minerals for sale. If you would like to add information to improve the quality of our database, then click here to register.
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