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Smythite

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Formula:
(Fe,Ni)3+xS4 (x=0-0.3)
System:
Trigonal
Colour:
brownish black, ...
Hardness:
Name:
Named by Richard C. Erd, Howard T. Evans, Jr., and Donald H. Richter in 1957 after Charles Henry Smyth, Jr. (1867-1937), Professor of Economic Geology, Princeton University, New Jersey (USA)
Pyrrhotite Group.

An iron(-nickel) sulphide visually very similar to pyrrhotite and troilite.

Classification of Smythite

Valid - first described prior to 1959 (pre-IMA) - "Grandfathered"
Explanation of status:
May be a trigonal polytype of Pyrrhotite
2.CC.10

2 : SULFIDES and SULFOSALTS (sulfides, selenides, tellurides; arsenides, antimonides, bismuthides; sulfarsenites, sulfantimonites, sulfbismuthites, etc.)
C : Metal Sulfides, M: S = 1: 1 (and similar)
C : With Ni, Fe, Co, PGE, etc.
2.8.10.2

2 : SULFIDES
8 : AmXp, with m:p = 1:1
3.9.7

3 : Sulphides, Selenides, Tellurides, Arsenides and Bismuthides (except the arsenides, antimonides and bismuthides of Cu, Ag and Au, which are included in Section 1)
9 : Sulphides etc. of Fe
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Type Occurrence of Smythite

Year of Discovery:
1956
Associated Minerals at Type Locality:

Physical Properties of Smythite

Metallic
Diaphaneity (Transparency):
Opaque
Colour:
brownish black, bronze-yellow
Comment:
Black with tinge of brown against a white surface; bronze yellow reflections from {0001}
Streak:
dark gray
Hardness (Mohs):
Tenacity:
Brittle
Cleavage:
Perfect
{0001)
Fracture:
Sub-Conchoidal
Comment:
Flexible and elastic in thin lamellae
Density:
4.32 g/cm3 (Measured)    4.32 g/cm3 (Calculated)
Comment:
Taylor and Williams (1972) in their redefinition of Smythite say both measured and calculated densities are ~4.32, replacing the older value of 4.06

Crystallography of Smythite

Crystal System:
Trigonal
Class (H-M):
3m (3 2/m) - Hexagonal Scalenohedral
Space Group:
R3m
Cell Parameters:
a = 3.465Å, c = 34.34Å
Ratio:
a:c = 1 : 9.911
Unit Cell Volume:
V 357.06 ų (Calculated from Unit Cell)
Z:
3
Morphology:
Thin pseudohexagonal plates [0001] and "a rhombohedron". Crystals are so thin at the type locality than the prism was not observed. Twinning common producing warped hexagonal plates. Impossible to visually distinguish at the type locality, and nearby locations, from pyrrhotite with which it constantly is associated (Erd et al., 1957).
Comment:
Also given as 3.47, 34.50 A.
X-Ray Powder Diffraction Data:
d-spacingIntensity
11.5 (100)
5.75 (20)
2.99 (30)
2.57 (30)
2.27 (20)
2.17 (20)
1.99 (10)
1.74 (20)
Comments:
ICDD 25-1182

Optical Data of Smythite

Type:
Anisotropic
Anisotropism:
Strong with yellow and blue-grey interference colors
Pleochroism:
Strong
Comments:
Greyish yellow to reddish brown
Comments:
Tends to be free of inclusions or intergrowths; strongly resembles pyrrhotite

Chemical Properties of Smythite

Formula:
(Fe,Ni)3+xS4 (x=0-0.3)
Essential elements:
All elements listed in formula:
Analytical Data:
Smythite seems to have half of the Ni as does pyrrhotite, at the type locality; slowly soluble in dilute HCl and nitric acids as well as KOH and silver nitrate solutions

Relationship of Smythite to other Species

Structurally related to group(s):
2.CC.UM2007-26-S:CuFeIrNiPtRh(Ir,Cu,Ni,Pt,Rh,Fe)9S11
2.CC.05Achavalite(Fe,Cu)Se
2.CC.05BreithauptiteNiSb
2.CC.05FrebolditeCoSe
2.CC.05KotulskitePd(Te,Bi)
2.CC.05Langisite(Co,Ni)As
2.CC.05NickelineNiAs
2.CC.05Sederholmitebeta-NiSe
2.CC.05SobolevskitePd(Bi,Te)
2.CC.05StumpflitePt(Sb,Bi)
2.CC.05Sudburyite(Pd,Ni)Sb
2.CC.05JaipuriteCoS
2.CC.05ZlatogoriteNiCuSb2
2.CC.10PyrrhotiteFe1-xS (x = 0 to 0.17)
2.CC.10TroiliteFeS
2.CC.15CherepanoviteRhAs
2.CC.15Modderite(Co,Fe)As
2.CC.15Ruthenarsenite(Ru,Ni)As
2.CC.15Westerveldite(Fe,Ni,Co)As
2.CC.20MilleriteNiS
2.CC.20Mäkineniteγ-NiSe
2.CC.20UM1990-38-S:CuFeIrNiPtRh(Ir,Pt,Ni,Fe)S
2.CC.25Mackinawite(Fe,Ni)9S8
2.CC.30Hexatestibiopanickelite(Pd,Ni)(Sb,Te)
2.CC.30VavříniteNi2SbTe2
2.CC.35aBraggite(Pt,Pd,Ni)S
2.CC.35bCooperitePtS
2.CC.35aVysotskite(Pd,Ni)S
3.9.1PyrrhotiteFe1-xS (x = 0 to 0.17)
3.9.3PyriteFeS2
3.9.4MarcasiteFeS2
3.9.5GreigiteFe2+Fe23+S4
3.9.6Mackinawite(Fe,Ni)9S8
3.9.8Achavalite(Fe,Cu)Se
3.9.9FerroseliteFeSe2
3.9.10FrohbergiteFeTe2
3.9.11LöllingiteFeAs2
3.9.12ArsenopyriteFeAsS
3.9.13GudmunditeFeSbS

Other Names for Smythite

Name in Other Languages:
German:Smythit
Russian:Смизит
Simplified Chinese:菱硫铁矿
Spanish:Smythita

Other Information

Magnetism:
Ferromagnetic
Thermal Behaviour:
Heating at 400° C changed smythite to pyrrhotite in 18 hours; at lower temperature (290° C) smythite was a mixture of smythite + pyrrhotite in the same time.
Other Information:
Strongly ferromagnetic
Special Storage/
Display Requirements:
Easily rusts/oxidises to goethite when exposed to water or moist air although pyrrhotite tarnished and pitted sooner than smythite; crystals in calcite tend to be unoxidised and stable.
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 Smythite

Reference List:
J. Chem. Soc., London (1956) 78, 2017.

Erd, Richard C., Evans, Howard T. Jr., and Richter, Donald H. (1957) Smythite, A New Iron Sulfide, and Associated Pyrrhotite from Indiana. American Mineralogist, 42: 309-333.

American Mineralogist (1970) 55: 1650-1658.

L.A. Taylor and K.L. Williams (1972) Smythite Fe9S11 - A Redefinition. Ameican Mineralogist Vol. 57, pp. 7571-1577

American Mineralogist (1995) 80: 188.

European Journal of Mineralogy (1994) 6: 265-278.

Bon, C. E. and Rakovan, John (2011) The Morphology of Smythite (Fe,Ni)3S4, from Bloomington, Indiana, 38th Rochester Mineralogical Symposium Program and Abstracts, p.10.

Internet Links for Smythite

Localities for Smythite

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.
Antarctica
 
  • Eastern Antarctica
    • Queen Maud Land (Dronning Maud Land)
      • Queen Fabiola Mts (Yamato Mts)
El Gorsey, A., Yabuki, H., Ehlers, K., Woolum, D. & Pernicka, E. (1988). Qingzhen and Yamato-691: A tentative alphabet for the EH chondrites. Proceedings NIPR Symposium Antarctic Meteorites 1, 65-101.
Australia
 
  • Queensland
    • Mount Isa - Cloncurry area
      • Mary Kathleen district
Riley, J. F. (1980). Ferroan carrollites, cobaltian violarites, and other members of the linnaeite group:(Co, Ni, Fe, Cu) 3S4. Mineralogical Magazine, 43(330), 733-739.
  • Western Australia
    • Coolgardie Shire
      • Widgiemooltha
No reference listed
Canada
 
  • Manitoba
    • Flin Flon District
Economic Geology (1996) 91:1394-1413
    • Lac-du-Bonnet area
Canad. Mineral. , 1973, 12, pp.165-168.; Ritchie, Paul M. H. (1973) A study of the copper-nickel-zinc deposit of Bird River Mines Co. Ltd., Southeastern Manitoba. MS Thesis University of Manitoba.; E. H. Nickel (1972) Nickeliferous smythite from some Canadian occurrences. The Canadian Mineralogist 11:514-519
  • Ontario
    • Kenora District
      • Kapkichi Lake Area
Can Mineral 1984 22: 13-21
    • Rainy River District
      • Atikokan area
E. H. Nickel (1972) Nickeliferous smythite from some Canadian occurrences. The Canadian Mineralogist 11:514-519
    • Thunder Bay District
      • Pays Plat Lake Area
E. H. Nickel (1972) Nickeliferous smythite from some Canadian occurrences. The Canadian Mineralogist 11:514-519
    • Timiskaming District
      • Cobalt-Gowganda region
        • Cobalt area
          • Coleman Township
Dana's New Mineralogy; American Mineralogist (1970), 55:1650-1658; Petruk (1971): The Silver-Arsenide Deposits of the Cobalt-Gowganda Region, Ontario. Can. Mineral. 11, 196-231; Ann P. Sabina (1974) Rocks and Minerals for the Collector: Cobalt-Belleferre-Timmins; Ontario and Quebec. Canadian Geological Survey Paper 73-13
  • Québec
    • Abitibi-Témiscamingue
      • Témiscamingue RCM
        • Latulipe-et-Gaboury
E. H. Nickel (1972) Nickeliferous smythite from some Canadian occurrences. The Canadian Mineralogist 11:514-519
    • Montréal
TARASSOFF, P., HORVÁTH, L. and PFENNINGER-HORVÁTH, E. (2006) Famous mineral localities: the Francon quarry, Montréal, Québec. Mineralogical Record, 37, 5-60.
China
 
  • Gansu Province
    • Jinchang Prefecture
      • Jinchuan District
Shimpei Kano, Kuoxiong Sun, and Tsuyoshi Kitamura (1988): Bulletin of the Research Institute of Mineral Dressing and Metallurgy, Tohoku University 44(1), 15-30
  • Guizhou Province
    • Guiyang Prefecture
      • Qingzhen Co.
El Gorsey, A., Yabuki, H., Ehlers, K., Woolum, D. & Pernicka, E. (1988). Qingzhen and Yamato-691: A tentative alphabet for the EH chondrites. Proceedings NIPR Symposium Antarctic Meteorites 1, 65-101.
  • Shaanxi Province
    • Hanzhong Prefecture
      • Mian Co.
Xueming Wang, Mengxiong Chen, Mei Li, and Furang Li (2002): Geology and Prospecting 38(6), 34-38
Czech Republic
 
  • Bohemia (Böhmen; Boehmen)
    • Karlovy Vary Region
      • Krušné Hory Mts (Erzgebirge)
        • Jáchymov District (St Joachimsthal)
Lapis 2002(7/8), 63-65
      • Sokolov (Falkenau an der Eger)
Beran, P., Rojík, P.: Mineralogie a geologie lomu Lomnice v sokolovské hnědouhelné pánvi. Bulletin mineralogicko-petrografického oddělení Národního muzea v Praze, 1997, roč. 4-5, s. 77-83.
France
 
  • Alsace
    • Haut-Rhin
      • Thur valley (Thann valley)
        • Kruth
Kolitsch: Aufschluss 2/1997; U. Kolitsch (1997): Neufunde von Mineralien aus einigen Vorkommen der Vogesen, Frankreich: Giromagny, Auxelles-Haut und Kruth 1. Aufschluss 48 (4), 243-256.
  • Auvergne
    • Haute-Loire
      • Lavoûte-Chilhac
        • Saint-Cirgues
P.G. Pélisson : "Etude Minéralogique et Métallogénique du District Filonien Polytype de Paulhaguet (Haute-Loire, Massif Central Français)", Doctorate Thesis, Orléans, France, 1989
  • Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur
    • Alpes-Maritimes
      • Saint-Martin-Vésubie
        • Le Boréon
R. Pierrot, P. Picot, J. Féraud, J. Vernet : "Inventaire Minéralogique de la France N° 4 : Alpes-Maritimes", BRGM, 1974
Germany
 
  • Baden-Württemberg
    • Black Forest
      • Haslach
        • Steinach
Walenta, K. (1998): Neue Mineralfunde aus dem Schwarzwald (7. Folge, 1.Teil). Lapis, 23 (11), 35-xx
      • St Blasien
        • Urberg
K. Walenta: "Die Mineralien des Schwarzwaldes", Weise (Munich), 1992
      • Wolfach
        • Oberwolfach
          • Rankach valley
Walenta, K. (1992): Die Mineralien des Schwarzwaldes. Chr. Weise Verlag, München, 336 pp. (in German)
  • Lower Saxony
    • Harz
      • St Andreasberg District
        • St Andreasberg
Weiss: "Mineralfundstellen, Deutschland West", Weise (Munich), 1990
  • Thuringia
    • Gera
      • Ronneburg U deposit
Wolfgang Henckel
Italy
 
  • Liguria
    • Genova Province
      • Ne
        • Graveglia Valley
[MinRec 32:356]
  • Piedmont
    • Torino Province
      • Lanzo Valleys
        • Balangero
Piccoli, G.C., Maletto, G., Bosio, P., Lombardo, B. (2007): Minerali del Piemonte e della Valle d'Aosta. Associazione Amici del Museo "F. Eusebio" Alba, Ed., Alba (Cuneo) 607 pp.
    • Verbano-Cusio-Ossola Province
      • Ossola Valley
        • Formazza Valley
          • Formazza
Piccoli, G.C., Maletto, G., Bosio, P., Lombardo, B. (2007). Minerali del Piemonte e della Valle d'Aosta. Associazione Amici del Museo "F. Eusebio" Alba, Ed., Alba (Cuneo) 607 pp.
  • Tuscany
    • Lucca Province
      • Apuan Alps
        • Seravezza
Orlandi et al., 1996. Minerals of the Seravezza Marble, Tuscany, Italy. Min. Rec., 27: 47-58. ; Orlandi, P. & Criscuolo, A. (2009). Minerali del marmo delle Alpi Apuane. Pacini editore, Pisa, 180 pp.
        • Stazzema
          • Ponte Stazzemese
Orlandi P., Dini A., 2004. Die Mineralien der Buca della Vena-Mine, Apuaner Berge, Toskana (Italien). Lapis, 1: 11-24
    • Massa-Carrara Province
      • Apuan Alps
Orlandi P., Franzini M., 1994. I minerali del marmo di Carrara. Amilcare Pizzi S.p.A., Milano. ; Orlandi, P. & Criscuolo, A. (2009). Minerali del marmo delle Alpi Apuane. Pacini editore, Pisa, 180 pp.
Orlandi P., Franzini M., 1994. I minerali del marmo di Carrara. Amilcare Pizzi S.p.A., Milano.
Orlandi P., Franzini M., 1994. I minerali del marmo di Carrara. Amilcare Pizzi S.p.A., Milano.
        • Massa
Japan
 
  • Honshu Island
    • Chubu Region
      • Gifu Prefecture
        • Hida City
specimen seen at Kyoto show, 2010
Yamada, S. (2004) Nihonsan-koubutsu Gojuon-hairetsu Sanchi-ichiranhyou (111 pp.)
    • Tohoku Region
      • Iwate Prefecture
        • Kamaishi City
Imai et al (1976) Ganseki-Koubutsu-Koshogaku Zasshi, 71, 255-263.
Norway
 
  • Nordland
    • Ballangen
      • Håfjellet
Foslie, S. (1950): Supergene marcasite, replacing pyrrhotite. Norsk Geologisk Tidsskrift 28, 144-150; Neumann, H. (1985): Norges Mineraler. Norges Geologiske Undersøkelse Skrifter 68.
Slovakia
 
  • Banská Bystrica Region
    • Poltár Co.
Koděra, M. et al., 1986 a 1990 : Topografická mineralógia Slovenska, diel 1- 3, Veda – Vydavateľstvo SAV, Bratislava, 1990, 1 – 1590k
Switzerland
 
  • Solothurn
    • Lommiswil
Stalder, H. A., Wagner, A., Graeser, S. and Stuker, P. (1998): "Mineralienlexikon der Schweiz", Wepf (Basel), p. 379.
    • Olten
      • Trimbach
        • Unter Hauenstein
Stalder, H. A., Wagner, A., Graeser, S. and Stuker, P. (1998): "Mineralienlexikon der Schweiz", Wepf (Basel), p. 379.
  • Ticino (Tessin)
    • Blenio Valley
      • Camadra Valley
Stalder, H. A., Wagner, A., Graeser, S. and Stuker, P. (1998): "Mineralienlexikon der Schweiz", Wepf (Basel), p. 379.
    • Leventina
      • Faido
        • Monte Piottino
Stalder, H. A., Wagner, A., Graeser, S. and Stuker, P. (1998): "Mineralienlexikon der Schweiz", Wepf (Basel), p. 379.
  • Wallis (Valais)
    • Anniviers Valley
      • Ayer
Ansermet, S. (2012): Mines et minéraux du Valais - II. Anniviers et Tourtemagne. With contributions by N. Meisser, Ed. Porte-plumes (Ayer)
    • Binn Valley
      • Fäld (Imfeld; Im Feld; Feld)
Stalder, H. A., Wagner, A., Graeser, S. and Stuker, P. (1998): "Mineralienlexikon der Schweiz", Wepf (Basel), p. 379.
    • Brig
      • Simplon pass area
Stalder, H. A., Wagner, A., Graeser, S. and Stuker, P. (1998): "Mineralienlexikon der Schweiz", Wepf (Basel), p. 379.
    • Lötschen valley
      • Goppenstein
Rüegg, H.-R. & Klemm, L. (2002): Silbererze aus dem Bergwerk Goppenstein, Wallis (Schweiz). Lapis, 27 (3), 25-34.
Ukraine
 
  • Crimea Oblast'
World of Stones v.9
      • Kerch peninsula (Kertch peninsula)
        • Kerchenskyi (Fe)-ore basin
          • Kerchenskoe deposit
Arbuzov V.A. et al. (1967) Kerch Iron-Ore Basin (Kerchenskii Zhelezorydny Bassein)/ - Moscow:Nedra. - 576 h/ (Rus.)
      • Sudak area
Alexander I. Tischenko (1996. Minerals of the Crimea - World of stones, 1996, #9, p. 9-18
USA
 
  • California
    • Kern Co.
      • Kramer District
        • Boron
Morgan, V. and Erd, R.C. (1969) Minerals of the Kramer borate district, California California Division of Mines and Geology Mineral Information Service: 22(9): 168; Pemberton, H. Earl (1983), Minerals of California; Van Nostrand Reinholt Press: 66; Cal Div of Mines & Geology "Mineral Information Service: 22(10) (Oct 1969).
Represented in many Southern California micromount collections.
  • Colorado
    • Fremont Co.
      • Iron Mountain complex
Minerals of Colorado (1997) Eckels, E. B.
  • Indiana
    • Jackson Co.
      • Medora
Rocks & Min.: 61: 145.
    • Monroe Co.
      • Bloomington
J.Chem.Soc.,London(1956) 78, p. 2017; Mineral Reference Manual (Nickel and Nichols 1991); American Mineralogist (1957): 42: 309-333.
Erd, R. C. and S.S. Greenburg (1960) Minerals of Indiana. Indiana Geological Survey Bulletin 18 73pp
Erd, R. C. and S.S. Greenburg (1960) Minerals of Indiana. Indiana Geological Survey Bulletin 18 73pp
Erd, R. C. and S.S. Greenburg (1960) Minerals of Indiana. Indiana Geological Survey Bulletin 18 73pp; American Mineralogist (1957): 42: 309-333.
Erd, R. C. and S.S. Greenburg (1960) Minerals of Indiana. Indiana Geological Survey Bulletin 18 73pp
C. Boutry
      • Harrodsburg
Erd, R. C. and S.S. Greenburg (1960) Minerals of Indiana. Indiana Geological Survey Bulletin 18 73pp
Dr. John Rakovan specimens.
  • Kentucky
    • Lincoln Co.
      • Halls Gap
Mineralogical Record, v. 28, n. 6, 1997 ; Rocks & Minerals 81:420-440
    • Nelson Co.
      • Frederickstown
Alan Goldstein (2006) Kentucky Mineral Locality Index. Rocks & Minerals 81:420-440
    • Washington Co.
      • Springfield
Alan Goldstein (2006) Kentucky Mineral Locality Index. Rocks & Minerals 81:420-440
  • New York
    • Oneida Co.
      • Lairdsville
Erd, Richard C., Evans, Howard T. Jr., and Richter, Donald H., 1957, Smythite, A New Iron Sulfide, and Associated Pyrrhotite from Indiana, American Mineralogist, 42: 309-333.
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