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Oursinite

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Formula:
(Co,Mg)(UO2)2[HSiO4]2 · 6H2O
System:
Orthorhombic
Colour:
Pale yellow
Hardness:
3 - 3½
Name:
From the french oursin, in allusion to its appearance like a sea urchin
Uranophane Group

Classification of Oursinite

Approved 1982
9.AK.10

9 : SILICATES (Germanates)
A : Nesosilicates
K : Uranyl neso- and polysilicates
53.3.1.7

53 : NESOSILICATES Insular SiO4 Groups and Other Anions or Complex Cations
3 : Insular SiO4 Groups and Other Anions of Complex Cations with (UO2)
14.16.19

14 : Silicates not Containing Aluminum
16 : Silicates of U
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Type Occurrence of Oursinite

Physical Properties of Oursinite

Diaphaneity (Transparency):
Transparent
Colour:
Pale yellow
Hardness (Mohs):
3 - 3½
Cleavage:
Distinct/Good
on {hk0}
Density:
3.674 g/cm3 (Calculated)

Crystallography of Oursinite

Crystal System:
Orthorhombic
Class (H-M):
mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m) - Dipyramidal
Space Group:
Cmca
Cell Parameters:
a = 7.0494Å, b = 17.55Å, c = 12.734Å
Ratio:
a:b:c = 0.402 : 1 : 0.726
Unit Cell Volume:
V 1575.4 ų
Z:
4
Morphology:
Radiating aggregates of acicular crystals to 1mm.

Optical Data of Oursinite

Type:
Biaxial (-)
RI values:
nα = 1.624 nβ = 1.640 nγ = 1.650
2V:
Measured: 76° , Calculated: 76°
Max Birefringence:
δ = 0.026
Image shows birefringence interference colour range (at 30µm thickness) and does not take into account mineral colouration.
Surface Relief:
Moderate
Dispersion:
weak

Chemical Properties of Oursinite

Formula:
(Co,Mg)(UO2)2[HSiO4]2 · 6H2O
Essential elements:
All elements listed in formula:
Common Impurities:
Ni

Relationship of Oursinite to other Species

9.AK.05Soddyite(UO2)2SiO4 · 2H2O
9.AK.10CuprosklodowskiteCu(UO2)2[HSiO4]2 · 6H2O
9.AK.10SklodowskiteMg(UO2)2[HSiO4]2 · 5H2O
9.AK.15Boltwoodite(K,Na)(UO2)[HSiO4] · 0.5H2O
9.AK.15KasolitePb(UO2)[SiO4] · H2O
9.AK.15Natroboltwoodite(H3O)(Na,K)UO2SiO4 · H2O
9.AK.15Uranophane-βCa(UO2)2(HSiO4)2 · 5H2O
9.AK.15UranophaneCa(UO2)2[HSiO4]2 · 5H2O
9.AK.15Beta-Uranophane
9.AK.20SwamboiteUH6(UO2)6(SiO4)6 · 30H2O
9.AK.25HaiweeiteCa(UO2)2[Si5O12(OH)2] · 6H2O
9.AK.25MetahaiweeiteCa(UO2)2Si6O15 · nH2O
9.AK.25Ranquilite
9.AK.30WeeksiteK2(UO2)2(Si5O13) · 4H2O
9.AK.30CoutinhoiteThxBa(1-2x)(UO2)2Si5O13 · (H2O)1+y (0 < x < 0.5 and 0 < y < (2+x))
9.AK.35Ursilite(Mg,Ca)4(UO2)4(Si2O5)5.5(OH)5 · 13H2O
9.AK.35MagnioursiliteMg4(UO2)4(Si2O5)5(OH)6 · 20H2O
9.AK.35CalcioursiliteCa4(UO2)4(Si2O5)5(OH)6 · 15H2O
9.AK.40UranosiliteUO3 · 7SiO2
14.16.1UranosiliteUO3 · 7SiO2
14.16.2Coffinite(U4+,Th)(SiO4)1-x(OH)4x
14.16.3Soddyite(UO2)2SiO4 · 2H2O
14.16.4SwamboiteUH6(UO2)6(SiO4)6 · 30H2O
14.16.5WeeksiteK2(UO2)2(Si5O13) · 4H2O
14.16.6Boltwoodite(K,Na)(UO2)[HSiO4] · 0.5H2O
14.16.7Natroboltwoodite(H3O)(Na,K)UO2SiO4 · H2O
14.16.8CuprosklodowskiteCu(UO2)2[HSiO4]2 · 6H2O
14.16.9SklodowskiteMg(UO2)2[HSiO4]2 · 5H2O
14.16.10UranophaneCa(UO2)2[HSiO4]2 · 5H2O
14.16.11Uranophane-βCa(UO2)2(HSiO4)2 · 5H2O
14.16.12HaiweeiteCa(UO2)2[Si5O12(OH)2] · 6H2O
14.16.13MetahaiweeiteCa(UO2)2Si6O15 · nH2O
14.16.15Steacyite(◻,K)(Na,Ca)2(Th,U)[Si8O20]
14.16.16Ekanite(Ca,Fe2+,Pb)2(Th,U)[Si8O20]
14.16.17KasolitePb(UO2)[SiO4] · H2O
14.16.18OrlitePb3(UO2)3(Si2O7)2 · 6H2O

Other Names for Oursinite

Name in Other Languages:
German:Oursinit
Spanish:Oursinita

Other Information

Health Risks:
No information on health risks for this material has been entered into the database. You should always treat mineral specimens with care.

References for Oursinite

Reference List:
Deliens, M. and Piret, P. (1983) L'oursinite (Co0.86Mg0.10Ni0.04)0.2UO3·2SiO2·6H2O, nouveau mineral de Shinkolobwe, Shaba, Zaïre. Bulletin de la Société française de Minéralogie et de Cristallographie (1983): 196: 305-308.

American Mineralogist (1984): 69: 567.

Burns, P.C. (2005) U 6+ minerals and inorganic compounds: insights into an expanded structural hierarchy of crystal structures. Canadian Mineralogist: 43: 1839-1894.

Burns, P.C. & Hughes Kubatko, K.-A. (2006): A novel arrangement of silicate tetrahedra in the uranyl sheet of oursinite, (Co0.8Mg0.2)[(UO2)(SiO3OH)]2(H2O)6. American Mineralogist, 91, 333-336.

Kobatko, K.-A. and Burns, P.C. (2006) A novel arrangement of silicate tetrahedra in the uranyl silicate sheetof oursinite, (Co0.8Mg0.2)[(UO2)(SiO3OH)]2(H2O)6. American Mineralogist: 91: .

Internet Links for Oursinite

Localities for Oursinite

map shows a selection of localities that have latitude and longitude coordinates recorded. Click on the symbol to view information about a locality. The symbol next to localities in the list can be used to jump to that position on the map.
(TL) indicates type locality for a valid mineral species. (FRL) indicates first recorded locality for everything else. ? indicates mineral may be doubtful at this locality. All other localities listed without reference should be considered as uncertain and unproven until references can be found.
Democratic Republic of Congo (Zaïre) (TL)
 
  • Katanga (Shaba)
    • Katanga Copper Crescent
      • Shinkolobwe
Bull.Minéral.(1983) 106, 305-308
Mineral and/or Locality  
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