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Volborthite

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Formula:
Cu3(V2O7)(OH)2 · 2H2O
System:
Monoclinic
Colour:
Olive-green, ...
Hardness:
Name:
Named after Alexander von Volborth (1800-1876), Russian paleontologist, who first noted the mineral.
A secondary mineral found in the oxidized zones of vanadium-bearing hydrothermal deposits.

At least two different monoclinic space-group variants (C2/m, C2/c) seem to be stable at ambient temperature.

Visually similar to vésigniéite.
Structurally related to engelhauptite.

Classification of Volborthite

Approved
8.FD.05

8 : PHOSPHATES, ARSENATES, VANADATES
F : Polyphosphates, Polyarsenates, [4]-Polyvanadates
D : Polyphosphates, etc., with OH and H2O
40.3.10.1

40 : HYDRATED NORMAL PHOSPHATES,ARSENATES AND VANADATES
3 : A3(XO4)2·xH2O
21.1.12

21 : Vanadates (and vanadates with arsenate or phosphate)
1 : Vanadates of the alkalis and Cu
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Type Occurrence of Volborthite

Year of Discovery:
1837

Occurrences of Volborthite

Geological Setting:
Oxidized zones of vanadium-bearing hydrothermal deposits.

Physical Properties of Volborthite

Vitreous, Waxy, Greasy, Pearly
Diaphaneity (Transparency):
Translucent
Comment:
Lustre pearly on the cleavage surfaces.
Colour:
Olive-green, yellow-green; green to yellow-green in transmitted light.
Hardness (Mohs):
Cleavage:
Perfect
One perfect.
Density:
3.5 - 3.8 g/cm3 (Measured)    3.52 g/cm3 (Calculated)

Crystallography of Volborthite

Crystal System:
Monoclinic
Class (H-M):
2/m - Prismatic
Space Group:
B2/m
Space Group Setting:
C1 2/m 1
Cell Parameters:
a = 10.610(2) Å, b = 5.866(1) Å, c = 7.208(1) Å
β = 95.04(2)°
Ratio:
a:b:c = 1.809 : 1 : 1.229
Unit Cell Volume:
V 446.88 ų (Calculated from Unit Cell)
Z:
2
Morphology:
Pseudohexagonal. Scaly, fibrous or spongy crusts and rosette-like aggregates; also reticulated. Scales may have a triangular or hexagonal outline.
X-Ray Powder Diffraction:
Image Loading

Radiation - Copper Kα
Data Set:
Data courtesy of RRUFF project at University of Arizona, used with permission.
X-Ray Powder Diffraction Data:
d-spacingIntensity
7.16 (10)
4.103 (5)
3.090 (5)
2.998 (5)
2.643 (7)
2.571 (7)
2.389 (7)

Optical Data of Volborthite

Type:
Biaxial (+/-)
RI values:
nα = 1.793 nβ = 1.801 nγ = 1.816
2V:
Measured: 63° to 83°
Max Birefringence:
δ = 0.023
Image shows birefringence interference colour range (at 30µm thickness) and does not take into account mineral colouration.
Surface Relief:
Very High
Dispersion:
r > v or r < v
Pleochroism:
Weak

Chemical Properties of Volborthite

Formula:
Cu3(V2O7)(OH)2 · 2H2O
All elements listed in formula:

Relationship of Volborthite to other Species

Other Members of Group:
KarpenkoiteCo3(V2O7)(OH)2·2H2O
MartyiteZn3(V2O7)(OH)2 · 2H2O
21.1.1MetamuniriteNaVO3
21.1.2MuniriteNaVO3 · 1.9H2O
21.1.3Barnesite(Na,Ca)V6O16 · 3H2O
21.1.4Bannermanite(Na,K)0.7V4+0.7V5+5.3O15
21.1.5HowardevansiteNaCuFe2(VO4)3
21.1.6HuemuliteNa4Mg(V10O28) · 24H2O
21.1.7Blossiteα-Cu2(V2O7)
21.1.8Ziesiteβ-Cu2(V2O7)
21.1.9StoiberiteCu5(VO4)2O2
21.1.10McbirneyiteCu3(VO4)2
21.1.11FingeriteCu11(VO4)6O2
21.1.13TangeiteCaCu(VO4)(OH)
21.1.14VésigniéiteBaCu3(VO4)2(OH)2
21.1.15LyonsiteCu3Fe4(VO4)6

Other Names for Volborthite

Name in Other Languages:

Other Information

Other Information:
Soluble in acids.
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 Volborthite

Reference List:
Hess (1838) Bull. Acad. St. Petersburg (1838), 4, 21-22.

Hess (1838) Journal für praktische Chemie, Leipzig: 14: 52.

Planer (1849) Archiv für wissenschaftliche Kunde: 8: 135 (as Knauffite).

Genth (1877) Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society: 17: 122.

Hillebrand and Merwin (1913) American Journal of Science: 35: 441 (on material called Calciovolborthite - ?).

Fersman (1925) Priroda, Leningrad, no. 7-9, col. 238 (as Uzbekite).

Kurbatov (1926a) Centralblatt für Mineralogie, Geologie und Paleontologie, Stuttgart: 345 (as Uzbekite).

Kurbatov and Kargin (1927) Comptes rendus de l’académie des sciences de l’U.R.S.S., n.s., no. 75-80 (as α-Uzbekite and β-Uzbekite).

Mellor, J.W. (1929) A Comprehensive Treatise on Inorganic and Theoretical Chemistry. 16 volumes, London: 9: 767.

Barth and Berman (1930) Chemie der Erde, Jena: 5: 30 (as Uzbekite).

Fersman (1930) Abh. pr. Geol. Bergwirtsch.: 19: 36.

Strunz, H. (1939): Mineralien der Descloizitgruppe. Konichalcit, Staszizit, Austinit, Duftit, Aräoxen, Volborthit, Pyrobelonit. Zeitschrift für Kristallographie, Mineralogie und Petrographie, Leipzig (A) 101, 496-506.

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.: 816, 818-819.

Leonardsen, E.S. and Petersen, O.V. (1974) The unit cell of volborthite. American Mineralogist 59: 372-373.

Basso, R., A. Palenzona, L. Zefiro (1988) Crystal structure refinement of volborthite from Scrava mine (Eastern Liguria, Italy). Neues Jahrbuch für Mineralogie, Monatshefte 1988, 385-394.

Lafontaine, M.A., A. Le Bail and G. F´erey (1990) Copper-containing minerals – I. Cu3V2O7(OH)2, 2H2O: the synthetic homolog of volborthite; crystal structure determination from X-ray and neutron data; structural correlations. Journal of Solid State Chem., 85, 220–227.

American Mineralogist (1991): 76: 671.

Pekov, I.V. (1998) Minerals first discovered on the territory of the former Soviet Union, 231–232.

Kashaev A A, Rozhdestvenskaya I V, Bannova I I, Sapozhnikov A N, Glebova O D (2008): Balance, uniformity, and asymmetry of the structure of volborthite Cu3(OH)2(V2O7).2H2O. Journal of Structural Chemistry 49, 708-711.

O. Janson, J. Richter, P. Sindzingre, H. Rosner (2010): Coupled frustrated quantum spin-1/2 chains with orbital order in volborthite Cu3V2O7(OH)2(H2O)2. Phys. Rev. B 82, 104434. [http://arxiv.org/abs/1004.2185v2]

Ishikawa H, Yamaura J, Okamoto Y, Yoshida H, Nilsen G J, Hiroi Z (2012): A novel crystal polymorph of volborthite, Cu3V2O7(OH)2.2H2O. Acta Crystallographica C68, i41-i44. [http://arxiv.org/ftp/arxiv/papers/1209/1209.3162.pdf]

Yoshida H, Yamaura J, Isobe M, Nilsen G J, Hiroi Z (2012): Orbital switching in a frustrated magnet. Nature Communications 3, 8601-8605.

Internet Links for Volborthite

Localities for Volborthite

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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