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Siderite

This page kindly sponsored by Geoff Van Horn
Formula:
FeCO3
System:
Trigonal
Colour:
Yellowish-brown to ...
Lustre:
Vitreous, Silky, Pearly
Hardness:
3½ - 4½
Member of:
Name:
Named in 1845 by Wilhelm Karl von Haidinger from the Greek σίδηρος, "iron", in allusion to its composition.
Calcite Group. Magnesite-Siderite Series, Rhodochrosite-Siderite Series, Siderite-Smithsonite Series.

Crystals typically found as brown to tan rhombohedrons in clusters, faces often curved or composites; more often found as medium to dark brown massive fine grained material or as massive crystalline material with exposed curved cleavage surfaces.

Visit gemdat.org for gemological information about Siderite.

Classification of Siderite

Valid - first described prior to 1959 (pre-IMA) - "Grandfathered"
5.AB.05

5 : CARBONATES (NITRATES)
A : Carbonates without additional anions, without H2O
B : Alkali-earth (and other M2+) carbonates
Dana 7th ed.:
14.1.1.3
14.1.1.3

14 : ANHYDROUS NORMAL CARBONATES
1 : A(XO3)
11.13.1

11 : Carbonates
13 : Carbonates of Fe
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http://www.mindat.org/min-3647.html
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Occurrences of Siderite

Geological Setting:
Most often found in bedded sedimentary deposits with a biological component, with shales, clays and coal beds - suggesting that the siderite is biogenically created under low-oxygen and low-Ph conditions. It is also found in metamorphosed sedimentary rocks as more massively crystalline material, as a primary gangue mineral in hydrothermal deposits, and in pegmatites, including nepheline syenite pegamtites; as bog deposits.

Physical Properties of Siderite

Vitreous, Silky, Pearly
Diaphaneity (Transparency):
Translucent
Colour:
Yellowish-brown to greyish-brown, pale yellow to tannish, grey, brown, green, red, black and sometimes nearly colourless; tarnished iridescent at times; colourless to yellow and yellow-brown in transmitted light.
Streak:
White
Hardness (Mohs):
3½ - 4½
Hardness Data:
Measured
Tenacity:
Brittle
Cleavage:
Perfect
Perfect on {1011}.
Fracture:
Irregular/Uneven, Conchoidal
Density:
3.96(1) g/cm3 (Measured)    3.932 g/cm3 (Calculated)

Crystallography of Siderite

Crystal System:
Trigonal
Class (H-M):
3m (3 2/m) - Hexagonal Scalenohedral
Space Group:
R3c
Cell Parameters:
a = 4.6916Å, c = 15.3796Å
Ratio:
a:c = 1 : 3.278
Unit Cell Volume:
V 293.17 ų (Calculated from Unit Cell)
Z:
6
Morphology:
Crystals usually rhombohedral {1011} or {0112}, often curved or with composite faces; also more rarely thi to thick tabular {0001}, prismatic [0001] with {1120}, or scalenohedral; most often found as massive material, either fine-grained in sedimentary settings or massively crystalline in metamorphic settings; may also be botryoidal or globular with a fibrous internal structure.
Twinning:
On {0112}, lamellar,uncommon, with translation gliding on {0001} or {1011}. On {0001}, rare.

Crystallographic forms of Siderite

Crystal Atlas:
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Siderite no.27 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Siderite no.50 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
3d models and HTML5 code kindly provided by www.smorf.nl.

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X-Ray Powder Diffraction:
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Radiation - Copper Kα
Data Set:
Data courtesy of RRUFF project at University of Arizona, used with permission.
X-Ray Powder Diffraction Data:
d-spacingIntensity
3.59(30)
2.80(100)
2.35(20)
2.13(20)
1.965(20)
1.738(30)
1.732(40)
1.506(10)

Optical Data of Siderite

Type:
Uniaxial (-)
RI values:
nω = 1.875 nε = 1.633
Max Birefringence:
δ = 0.242
Image shows birefringence interference colour range (at 30µm thickness) and does not take into account mineral colouration.
Surface Relief:
High
Dispersion:
Strong

Chemical Properties of Siderite

Formula:
FeCO3
Essential elements:
All elements listed in formula:
Common Impurities:
Mn,Mg,Ca,Zn,Co

Relationship of Siderite to other Species

Series:
Forms a series with Rhodochrosite (see here)
Forms a series with Magnesite (see here)
Forms a series with Smithsonite (see here)
Member of:
Other Members of Group:
Common Associates:
5.AB.05CalciteCaCO3
5.AB.05Gaspéite(Ni,Mg,Fe)CO3
5.AB.05MagnesiteMgCO3
5.AB.05OtaviteCdCO3
5.AB.05RhodochrositeMnCO3
5.AB.05SmithsoniteZnCO3
5.AB.05SpherocobaltiteCoCO3
5.AB.10AnkeriteCa(Fe2+,Mg)(CO3)2
5.AB.10DolomiteCaMg(CO3)2
5.AB.10KutnohoriteCa(Mn,Mg,Fe)(CO3)2
5.AB.10MinrecorditeCaZn(CO3)2
5.AB.15AragoniteCaCO3
5.AB.15CerussitePbCO3
5.AB.15StrontianiteSrCO3
5.AB.15WitheriteBaCO3
5.AB.20VateriteCaCO3
5.AB.25HuntiteCaMg3(CO3)4
5.AB.30NorsethiteBaMg(CO3)2
5.AB.35AlstoniteBaCa(CO3)2
5.AB.40OlekminskiteSr(Sr,Ca,Ba)(CO3)2
5.AB.40ParalstoniteBaCa(CO3)2
5.AB.45BarytocalciteBaCa(CO3)2
5.AB.50Carbocernaite(Ca,Na)(Sr,Ce,Ba)(CO3)2
5.AB.55Benstonite(Ba,Sr)6(Ca,Mn)6Mg(CO3)13
5.AB.60JuangodoyiteNa2Cu(CO3)2
11.13.2PyroauriteMg6Fe23+(OH)16[CO3] · 4H2O
11.13.3Pyroaurite-2HMg6Fe23+(CO3)(OH)16 · 4H2O
11.13.4BrugnatelliteMg6Fe3+(CO3)(OH)13 · 4H2O
11.13.5CoalingiteMg10Fe23+(OH)24[CO3] · 2H2O
11.13.6AnkeriteCa(Fe2+,Mg)(CO3)2

Other Names for Siderite

Other Information

Magnetism:
Paramagnetic
Other Information:
Slighty soluble in water.
Health Risks:
No information on health risks for this material has been entered into the database. You should always treat mineral specimens with care.
Industrial Uses:
An ore of iron when found in sufficient volumes to be economically recoverable.

References for Siderite

Reference List:
Gesner, C. (1565) De omni rerum fossilium genere, gemmis, lapidibus, metallis, etc. Tiguri (as Stahelreich Eisen).

Wallerius, J.G (1747) Mineralogia, eller Mineralriket. Stockholm (as Spatformig Jernmalm.

Cronstedt, A. (1758) Mineralogie; eller Mineral-Rikets Upstallning. Stockholm: 29 (as Stahlstein).

de Lisle, R. (1783) Cristallographie, ou description des formes propres à tous les corps du regne minéral. 4 volumes, Paris: 3: 281 (as Fer spatique).

Wollaston (1812) Phil. Trans.: 159.

Hausmann, J.F.L. (1813) Handbuch der Mineralogie 3 volumes, Göttingen. Second edition: 951, 952 (as Eisenspath).

Glocker, E.F. (1847) Generum et specierum mineralien secundum ordines naturals digestorum synopsis. Halle: 241.

Johnsen (1902) Neues Jahrbuch für Mineralogie, Geologie und Paleontologie, Heidelberg, Stuttgart: II: 133.

Hutchinson (1903) Mineralogical Magazine: 13: 209.

Kreutz (1909) Mineralogical Magazine: 15: 232.

Goldschmidt, V. (1916) Atlas der Krystallformen. 9 volumes, atlas, and text: vol. 3: 107.

Honess (1918) American Journal of Science: 45: 201.

Wyckoff (1920) American Journal of Science: 50: 317.

Niggli (1921) Zeitschrift für Kristallographie, Mineralogie und Petrographie, Leipzig: 56: 224.

Klerk (1926) Beiträge zur Krystallographie und Mineralogie, Heidelberg: 3: 85.

Schoklitsch (1935) Zeitschrift für Kristallographie, Mineralogie und Petrographie, Leipzig: 90: 433.

Fornaseri (1941) Rendus soc. min. ital. (1941): 1: 60.

Wayland (1942) American Mineralogist: 27: 614.

Rowland and Jonas (1949) American Mineralogist: 34: 550.

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: Halides, Nitrates, Borates, Carbonates, Sulfates, Phosphates, Arsenates, Tungstates, Molybdates, Etc. John Wiley and Sons, Inc., New York, 7th edition, revised and enlarged: 166-171.

Henderson, E.P. & S.H. Perry (1958), Studies of seven siderites: Proceedings of the U.S. National Museum: 107: 339-403.

Goldsmith, J.R., D.L. Graf, J. Witters & D.A. Northrop (1962), Studies in the system CaCO3•MgCO3•FeCO3: (1) Phase relations; (2) A method for major element spectrochemical analyses; and (3) Composition of some ferroan dolomites. Journal of Geology: 70: 659-688.

Zeitschrift für Kristallographie (1981): 156: 233-243.

Gaines, Richard V., H. Catherine, W. Skinner, Eugene E. Foord, Brian Mason, Abraham Rosenzweig (1997), Dana's New Mineralogy : The System of Mineralogy of James Dwight Dana and Edward Salisbury Dana: 435.

Reviews in Mineralogy, Mineralogical Society of America: 11.

Anthony, J.W., Bideaux, R.A., Bladh, K.W., and Nichols, M.C. (2003) Handbook of Mineralogy, Volume V. Borates, Carbonates, Sulfates. Mineral Data Publishing, Tucson, AZ, 813pp.: 644.

E. Boulard, F. Guyot, G. Fiquet (2012): The influence on Fe content on Raman spectra and unit cell parameters of magnesite–siderite solid solutions. Phys. Chem. Minerals 39, 239-246.

Internet Links for Siderite

Specimens:
The following Siderite specimens are currently listed for sale on minfind.com.

Localities for Siderite

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.
Mineral and/or Locality  
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