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Amblygonite

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Montebrasite
Minas Gerais, Brazil
© A&M




Formula:
LiAl(PO
 
4
)F
System:TriclinicColour:Milk-white, yellow, ...
Lustre:Sub-Vitreous, Resinous, Greasy, PearlyHardness:5½ - 6
Member of:Amblygonite Group
Name:Named by August Breithaupt in 1817 from the Greek αμβλύς ("amvlys") for "blunt" and γωνία ("gonia") for "angle," referring to the fact that its cleavage angle slightly differs from 90°, distinguishing it from scapolite for which it was originally mistaken.
Isostructural with:Montebrasite, Natromontebrasite, Tavorite


Amblygonite-Montebrasite Series. Fluorine analogue of Montebrasite.

Occurs chiefly in granite pegmatites of the lithium- and phosphate-rich type. Crystals may be enormous in size.
NOTE: Most "amblygonite" from granite pegmatites, especially from crystal pockets, are in fact montebrasite.

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Classification of Amblygonite

IMA status:Valid - first described prior to 1959 (pre-IMA) - "Grandfathered"
Strunz 8th edition ID:7/B.02-30
Nickel-Strunz 10th (pending) edition ID:8.BB.05

8 : PHOSPHATES, ARSENATES, VANADATES
B : Phosphates, etc., with additional anions, without H2O
B : With only medium-sized cations, (OH, etc.):RO4 about 1:1
Dana 8th edition ID:41.5.8.1

41 : ANHYDROUS PHOSPHATES, ETC.CONTAINING HYDROXYL OR HALOGEN
5 : (AB)2(XO4)Zq
Hey's CIM Ref.:22.1.1

22 : Phosphates, Arsenates or Vanadates with other Anions
1 : Phosphates, arsenates or vanadates with fluoride
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Type Occurrence of Amblygonite

Type Locality:Chursdorf, Penig, Chemnitz, Saxony, Germany
General Appearance of Type Material:Massive
Place of Conservation of Type Material:Mining Academy, Freiberg, Germany, 20336
Year of Discovery:1817
Geological Setting of type material:Granite pegmatite
Associated Minerals at type locality:
TourmalineTopaz

Occurrences of Amblygonite

Geological Setting:Zoned granite pegmatites, high-temperature tin veins, greisens.

Physical Properties of Amblygonite

Lustre:Sub-Vitreous, Resinous, Greasy, Pearly
Diaphaneity (Transparency):Transparent, Translucent
Comment:Slightly pearly on well-developed cleavages.
Colour:Milk-white, yellow, beige, salmon-pink, pale green, light blue, grey; colourless in transmitted light.
Comment:Almost always white to slightly gray-white; yellow specimens may be montebrasite
Streak:white
Hardness (Mohs):5½ - 6
Tenacity:Brittle
Cleavage:Perfect
On {100} perfect; {110} good; {011}, distinct; {001}, imperfect.
Fracture:Irregular/Uneven, Sub-Conchoidal
Comment:Breaks into blocky pieces and may superficially resemble beryl, petalite, and other species.
Density (measured):3.04 - 3.11 g/cm3
Density (calculated):3.11 g/cm3
Comment:Amblygonite end-member value is ~ 3.11.

Crystallography of Amblygonite

Crystal System:Triclinic
Class (H-M):1 - Pinacoidal
Space Group:P1
Space Group Setting:P1
Cell Parameters:a = 6.644Å, b = 7.744Å, c = 6.91Å
α = 90.35°, β = 117.33°, γ = 91.01°
Ratio:a:b:c = 0.858 : 1 : 0.892
Unit Cell Volume:V 315.75 ų (Calculated from Unit Cell)
Z:4
Morphology:Crude crystals, typically equant to short prismatic [010], with complex form development, to 1.5 meters; also occurs as large cleavable masses; columnar; compact. Free-standing amblygonite crystals from crystal pockets are rare. Most pocket crystals are hydroxyl-rich montebrasite.
Twinning:On {111}, common, with composition plane {111} with the resulting twins commonly tabular parallel to {111} and the twinned individuals of about equal size; also tabular {110} and the twinned individuals of very unequal size. Also twins on {111}, rare; lamellar. Microscopic polysynthetic twinning is common.
Comment:Unit cell variability reported in Cerna, Cerrny, and Ferguson (1973)
X-Ray Powder Diffraction:
Image Loading

Radiation - Copper Kα
Data Set:
Horizontal Axis: ° to ° Vertical Axis: % Source Data: Filtered Data:
Data courtesy of RRUFF project at University of Arizona, used with permission.
X-Ray Powder Diffraction:
d-spacingIntensity
4.642 (80)
3.87 (80)
3.300 (50)
3.237 (60)
3.151 (100)
2.955 (80)
2.384 (50)
1.935 (60)
1.728 (50)
Comments:ICDD 22-1138. Sample from Chursdorf, Germany. Composition may be estimated +/- 5% of the weight percent F from position of diffraction peaks associated with d {101} (Cerna et al., 1973).

Optical Data of Amblygonite

Type:Biaxial (-)
RI values: nα = 1.577 - 1.591 nβ = 1.592 - 1.605 nγ = 1.596 - 1.613
2V:Measured: 107° to 129.5°
Birefringence:0.020
Maximum Birefringence:δ = 0.019 - 0.022

Chart shows birefringence interference colour range (at 30µm thickness) and does not take into account mineral colouration.
Surface Relief:Moderate
Dispersion:r > v
Pleochroism:Non-pleochroic
Comments:Refractive Index lowers with increased Fluorine substitution. (Greiner and Bloss, 1987).

Chemical Properties of Amblygonite

Formula:
LiAl(PO
 
4
)F
Simplified for copy/paste:LiAl(PO4)F
Essential elements:Al, F, Li, O, P
All elements listed in formula:Al, F, Li, O, P
Analytical Data:Sample from Chursdorf, Germany, by electron microprobe
P2O5 (48.44)
Al2O3 (33.90)
Li2O (10.12)
F (13.06)
H2O (0.00)
-O = F2 (5.50)
Empirical Formula:
Li
 
1.00
Al
 
0.98
[F
 
1.02
|(PO
 
4
)
 
1.01
]

Relationship of Amblygonite to other Species

Series:Forms a series with Montebrasite (see here)
Member of:Amblygonite Group
Other Members of Group:

- +
Montebrasite
LiAl(PO
 
4
)(OH)
Natromontebrasite
Tavorite
LiFe
3+
 
(PO
 
4
)(OH)
Common Associates:
TriphyliteTourmalineTopazSpodumenePollucite
PetaliteMica GroupLithiophiliteLepidoliteFluorapatite
Cassiterite
Related Minerals - Nickel-Strunz Grouping):

- +
8.BB.05Montebrasite
LiAl(PO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.05Tavorite
LiFe
3+
 
(PO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.10Triplite
(Mn
2+
 
,Fe
2+
 
)
 
2
(PO
 
4
)(F,OH)
8.BB.10Zwieselite
(Fe
2+
 
,Mn
2+
 
)
 
2
(PO
 
4
)F
8.BB.15Sarkinite
Mn
2+
2
(AsO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.15Triploidite
(Mn
2+
 
,Fe
2+
 
)
 
2
(PO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.15Wagnerite
(Mg,Fe
2+
 
)
 
2
(PO
 
4
)F
8.BB.15Wolfeite
(Fe
2+
 
,Mn
2+
 
)
 
2
(PO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.15Stanĕkite
(Mn
2+
 
,Fe
2+
 
,Mg)Fe
3+
 
(PO
 
4
)O
8.BB.15Joosteite
Mn
2+
 
(Mn
3+
 
,Fe
3+
 
)(PO
 
4
)O
8.BB.15Hydroxylwagnerite
Mg
 
2
(PO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.20Holtedahlite
Mg
 
2
(PO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.20Satterlyite
(Fe
2+
 
,Mg,Fe
3+
 
)
 
2
(PO
 
4
)(OH,O)
8.BB.25Althausite
Mg
 
4
(PO
 
4
)
 
2
(OH,O)(F,☐)
8.BB.30Adamite
Zn
 
2
(AsO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.30Eveite
Mn
2+
2
(AsO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.30Libethenite
Cu
 
2
(PO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.30Olivenite
Cu
 
2
(AsO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.30Zincolibethenite
CuZn(PO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.30Zincolivenite
CuZn(AsO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.30Auriacusite
Fe
3+
 
Cu
2+
 
(AsO
 
4
)O
8.BB.35Paradamite
Zn
 
2
(AsO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.35Tarbuttite
Zn
 
2
(PO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.40Barbosalite
Fe
2+
 
Fe
3+
2
(PO
 
4
)
 
2
(OH)
 
2
8.BB.40Hentschelite
CuFe
3+
2
(PO
 
4
)
 
2
(OH)
 
2
8.BB.40Lazulite
(Mg,Fe
2+
 
)Al
 
2
(PO
 
4
)
 
2
(OH)
 
2
8.BB.40Scorzalite
Fe
2+
 
Al
 
2
(PO
 
4
)
 
2
(OH)
 
2
8.BB.40Wilhelmkleinite
ZnFe
3+
2
(AsO
 
4
)
 
2
(OH)
 
2
8.BB.45Trolleite
Al
 
4
(PO
 
4
)
 
3
(OH)
 
3
8.BB.50Namibite
Cu(BiO)
 
2
(VO
 
4
)(OH)
8.BB.55Phosphoellenbergerite
Mg
 
14
(PO
 
4
)
 
6
(HPO
 
4
,CO
 
3
)
 
2
(OH)
 
6
8.BB.60Urusovite
CuAl(AsO
 
4
)O
8.BB.65Theoparacelsite
Cu
 
3
(As
 
2
O
 
7
)(OH)
 
2
8.BB.70Turanite
Cu
 
5
(VO
 
4
)
 
2
(OH)
 
4
8.BB.75Stoiberite
Cu
 
5
(VO
 
4
)
 
2
O
 
2
8.BB.80Fingerite
Cu
 
11
(VO
 
4
)
 
6
O
 
2
8.BB.85Averievite
Cu
 
6
(VO
 
4
)
 
2
O
 
2
Cl
 
2
8.BB.90Lipscombite
(Fe
2+
 
,Mn
2+
 
)Fe
3+
2
(PO
 
4
)
 
2
(OH)
 
2
8.BB.90Richellite
CaFe
3+
2
(PO
 
4
)
 
2
(OH,F)
 
2
8.BB.90Zinclipscombite
ZnFe
3+
2
(PO
 
4
)
 
2
(OH)
 
2
Related Minerals - Hey's Index Grouping:

- +
22.1.2Lacroixite
NaAl(PO
 
4
)F
22.1.3Natrophosphate
Na
 
7
(PO
 
4
)
 
2
F · 19H
 
2
O
22.1.5Nacaphite
Na
 
2
Ca(PO
 
4
)F
22.1.6Arctite
Na
 
2
Ca
 
4
(PO
 
4
)
 
3
F
22.1.7Nefedovite
Na
 
5
Ca
 
4
(PO
 
4
)
 
4
F
22.1.9Fluorapatite
Ca
 
5
(PO
 
4
)
 
3
F
22.1.10Herderite
CaBePO
 
4
(F,OH)
22.1.11Isokite
CaMg(PO
 
4
)F
22.1.12Panasqueiraite
CaMg(PO
 
4
)(OH,F)
22.1.13Babefphite
BaBePO
 
4
(F,OH)
22.1.14Fluellite
Al
 
2
(PO
 
4
)F
 
2
(OH) · 7H
 
2
O
22.1.15Minyulite
KAl
 
2
(PO
 
4
)
 
2
(OH,F) · 4H
 
2
O
22.1.16Morinite
NaCa
 
2
Al
 
2
(PO
 
4
)
 
2
(OH)F
 
4
· 2H
 
2
O
22.1.17Bøggildite
Na
 
2
Sr
 
2
Al
 
2
PO
 
4
F
 
9
22.1.18Fluorstrophite
SrCaSr
 
3
(PO
 
4
)
 
3
F
22.1.19Viitaniemiite
Na(Ca,Mn
2+
 
)Al(PO
 
4
)(F,OH)
 
3
22.1.20Väyrynenite
Mn
2+
 
Be(PO
 
4
)(OH,F)
22.1.21Maxwellite
NaFe
3+
 
(AsO
 
4
)F
22.1.22Wagnerite
(Mg,Fe
2+
 
)
 
2
(PO
 
4
)F
22.1.23Triplite
(Mn
2+
 
,Fe
2+
 
)
 
2
(PO
 
4
)(F,OH)
22.1.24Magniotriplite
(Mg,Fe
2+
 
,Mn
2+
 
)
 
2
PO
 
4
F
22.1.25Zwieselite
(Fe
2+
 
,Mn
2+
 
)
 
2
(PO
 
4
)F
22.1.26Mcauslanite
Fe
 
3
Al
 
2
(PO
 
4
)
 
3
(PO
 
3
OH)F · 18H
 
2
O
22.1.27Richellite
CaFe
3+
2
(PO
 
4
)
 
2
(OH,F)
 
2
22.1.28Svabite
Ca
 
5
(AsO
 
4
)
 
3
F
22.1.29Tilasite
CaMg(AsO
 
4
)F
22.1.30Johnbaumite-M
Ca
 
5
(AsO
 
4
)
 
3
OH
22.1.31Durangite
NaAl(AsO
 
4
)F

Other Names for Amblygonite

Other Languages:
Basque:Anbligonita
Czech:Amblygonit
Dutch:Amblygoniet
German:Amblygonit
Italian:Ambligonite
Polish:Ambligonit
Portuguese:Ambligonita
Russian:Амблигонит
Simplified Chinese:磷锂铝石
锂磷铝石
Spanish:Amblygonita
Swedish:Amblygonit
Ukrainian:Амблігоніт
Varieties:
Hebronite

Other Information

Fluorescence in UV light:May fluoresce faint to medium cream yellow in SW and LW. Often shows patchy response.
Other Information:Soluble with difficulty in acids. Colours a flame red.

Alters to mixtures of smectite or kaolinite and mica group, often as alterations rimming or surrounding rounded nodules of unaltered material. Also alters to lacroixite, Turquoise, Wavellite, Wardite, and Morinite.
Health Warning:No information on health risks for this material has been entered into the database. You should always treat mineral specimens with care.

References for Amblygonite

Reference List:

- +
Breithaupt, A. (1818): Amblygonit.- C.A.S. Hoffmann´s Handbuch der Mineralogie, Vol. 4.2.- Freiberg, Verl. Craz & Gerlach, p. 159-161.

Des Cloizeaux (1863) Comptes rendus de l’Académie des sciences de Paris: 57: 357.

Des Cloizeaux (1871) Comptes rendus de l’Académie des sciences de Paris: 73: 306 (as Montebrasite).

von Kobell (1872) Akademie der Wissenschaften, Munich, Sitzber.: 284 (as Hebronite).

Pisani (1873) Annales des mines: 29: 82.

Penfield (1879) American Journal of Science: 18: 295.

Lacroix, A. (1910) Minéralogie de la France et des ses colonies, Paris. 5 volumes: vol. 4: 416.

Backlund (1918) Geologiska Föeningens I Stockholm. Förhandlinger, Stockholm: 40: 757.

Larsen, E.S. (1921) The Microscopic Determination of the Nonopaque Minerals, First edition, USGS Bulletin 679: 76.

Hintze, Carl (1924) Handbuch der Mineralogie. Berlin and Leipzig. 6 volumes: 1 [4A]: 626.

Landes, Kenneth K. (1925) On the Paragenesis of Granite Pegmatites in Central Maine, American Mineralogist: 10: 403, 410.

Winchell (1926) American Mineralogist: 11: 246.

Sekanina (1933) Spisy přiřo. fak. Masarykovy Univ., no. 180.

Quensel (1937) Geologiska Föeningens I Stockholm. Förhandlinger, Stockholm: 59: 455.

Strunz (1939) Zentralblatt Mineralien: 248.

Richmond (1940) American Mineralogist: 25: 473.

Tengnér (1940) Geologiska Föeningens I Stockholm. Förhandlinger, Stockholm: 62: 332.

Palache, C., Richmond and Wolfe (1943) American Mineralogist: 28: 39.

Pehrman (1945) Acta Ac. Aboensis, math Phys.: 15, no. 2.

Palache, C., Berman, H., & Frondel, C. (1951), The System of Mineralogy of James Dwight Dana and Edward Salisbury Dana, Yale University 1837-1892, Volume II. John Wiley and Sons, Inc., New York, 7th edition, revised and enlarged, 1124 pp.: 823.

Moss, A.A., E.E. Fejer & P.G. Embrey (1969), On the X-ray identification of amblygonite and montebrasite: Mineral. Magazine: 37: 412-422.

Cerna, I, Cerny, P., and Ferguson, R., 1973, The Fluorine Content and Some Physical Properties of the Amblygonite-Montebrasite Series, American Mineralogist, v. 58, p. 291-301.

Greiner, D. and Bloss, F., 1987, Amblygonite-Montebrasite Optics: Response to (OH-) Orientation and Rapid Estimation of F from 2V, American Mineralogist, v 72:617-624.

American Mineralogist: 75: 992-1008.

King, V. and Foord, E., 1994, The Amblygonite/Montebrasite Controversy, Mineralogy of Maine, volume 1, p. 15-17, 240-244.

Anthony, Bideaux, Bladh & Nichols (2000), Handbook of Mineralogy, Vol. IV.

Internet Links for Amblygonite

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  • Raman and XRD data at RRUFF project
  • American Mineralogist Crystal Structure Database
  • Amblygonite details from Handbook of Mineralogy (PDF)
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    Localities for Amblygonite

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