Help mindat.org|Log In|Register|
Home PageMindat NewsThe Mindat ManualHistory of MindatCopyright StatusManagement TeamContact UsAdvertise on Mindat
Donate to MindatSponsor a PageSponsored PagesTop Available PagesMindat AdvertisersAdvertise on MindatThe Mindat Store
Minerals by PropertiesMinerals by ChemistryRandom MineralSearch by minIDLocalities Near MeSearch GlossaryMore Search Options
Search For:
Mineral Name:
Locality Name:
Keyword(s):
 
The Mindat ManualAdd a New PhotoRate PhotosLocality Edit ReportAdd Glossary Item
StatisticsMember ListBooks & MagazinesMineral Shows & EventsThe Mindat DirectoryHow to Link to MindatDevice Settings
Photo SearchPhoto GalleriesNew Photos TodayNew Photos YesterdayMembers' Photo GalleriesPast Photo of the Day Gallery

Aurichalcite

This page is currently not sponsored. Click here to sponsor this page.
Formula:
(Zn,Cu)5(CO3)2(OH)6
Zn:Cu ratio is about 5:2, but may approach 2:1.
System:
Monoclinic
Colour:
Pale green, sky blue, or ...
Lustre:
Silky, Pearly
Hardness:
1 - 2
Name:
A sage noted that the Aurichalcum (latinicized version of the Greek ορείχαλκος - "mountain copper" ) of the ancients was "cuivre de Corinthe", yellow copper or brass; in 1839, Th. Böttger named the mineral accordingly, in allusion to its copper and zinc content, the constituents of brass.
A secondary mineral in copper and zinc deposits, aurichalcite is typically found as blue or green crusts or mats of tiny acicular crystals, often as feathery, tufted, druzes; more rarely it is found as columnar crystal aggregates, or crusts of either lamellar aggregates or as granular aggregates.

Classification of Aurichalcite

Valid - first described prior to 1959 (pre-IMA) - "Grandfathered"
5/C.01-110
5.BA.15

5 : CARBONATES (NITRATES)
B : Carbonates with additional anions, without H2O
A : With Cu, Co, Ni, Zn, Mg, Mn
Dana 7th ed.:
16.4.2.1
16a.4.2.1

16a : ANHYDROUS CARBONATES CONTAINING HYDROXYL OR HALOGEN
4 : (AB)5(XO3)2Zq
11.6.5

11 : Carbonates
6 : Carbonates of Zn and Cd
mindat.org URL:
http://www.mindat.org/min-422.html
Please feel free to link to this page.

First Recorded Occurrence of Aurichalcite

Year of Discovery:
1839

Occurrences of Aurichalcite

Geological Setting:
A secondary mineral in oxidized copper and zinc ore deposits, typically as crusts.

Physical Properties of Aurichalcite

Silky, Pearly
Diaphaneity (Transparency):
Transparent
Colour:
Pale green, sky blue, or greenish blue; colourless to light shades of blue or green in transmitted light
Streak:
Light blue
Hardness (Mohs):
1 - 2
Hardness Data:
Measured
Tenacity:
Fragile
Cleavage:
Perfect
Perfect on {010} and {100}.
Parting:
None
Fracture:
Irregular/Uneven
Density:
3.96 g/cm3 (Measured)    3.93 g/cm3 (Calculated)

Crystallography of Aurichalcite

Crystal System:
Monoclinic
Class (H-M):
2/m - Prismatic
Space Group:
P21/m
Cell Parameters:
a = 13.82Å, b = 6.419Å, c = 5.29Å
β = 101.04°
Ratio:
a:b:c = 2.153 : 1 : 0.824
Unit Cell Volume:
V 460.59 ų (Calculated from Unit Cell)
Z:
2
Morphology:
Prismatic crystals elongated on [100], striated in {100} parallel to (001), (010), producing a fine grid-like appearance corresponding to cleavage planes or twinning directions. Delicate acicular or lath-like crystals; tufted, feathery, or plumose incrustations; columnar structure rare, granular.
Twinning:
Observed in X-ray studies.
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
6.78 (100)
3.68 (70)
3.25 (30)
2.89 (40)
2.81 (30)
2.72 (40)
2.61 (80)
1.656 (40)

Optical Data of Aurichalcite

Type:
Biaxial (-)
RI values:
nα = 1.655 nβ = 1.740 nγ = 1.744
2V:
Measured: 1° to 4°, Calculated: 22°
Max Birefringence:
δ = 0.089
Image shows birefringence interference colour range (at 30µm thickness) and does not take into account mineral colouration.
Surface Relief:
High
Dispersion:
relatively strong r < v
Pleochroism:
Weak
Comments:
X = Colourless
Y = Blue-green
Z = Blue-green

Chemical Properties of Aurichalcite

Formula:
(Zn,Cu)5(CO3)2(OH)6

Zn:Cu ratio is about 5:2, but may approach 2:1.
Essential elements:
All elements listed in formula:
Common Impurities:
Ca

Relationship of Aurichalcite to other Species

5.BA.05AzuriteCu3(CO3)2(OH)2
5.BA.10GeorgeiteCu2(CO3)(OH)2 · 6H2O
5.BA.10Glaukosphaerite(Cu,Ni)2(CO3)(OH)2
5.BA.10Kolwezite(Cu,Co)2(CO3)(OH)2
5.BA.10MalachiteCu2(CO3)(OH)2
5.BA.10Mcguinnessite(Mg,Cu)2(CO3)(OH)2
5.BA.10NullaginiteNi2(CO3)(OH)2
5.BA.10PokrovskiteMg2(CO3)(OH)2
5.BA.10Rosasite(Cu,Zn)2(CO3)(OH)2
5.BA.10Zincrosasite(Zn,Cu)2(CO3)(OH)2
5.BA.10ChukanoviteFe22+(CO3)(OH)2
5.BA.15HydrozinciteZn5(CO3)2(OH)6
5.BA.20HoldawayiteMn6(CO3)2(OH)7(Cl,OH)
5.BA.25DeferniteCa6(CO3)2-x(SiO4)x(OH)7(Cl,OH)1-2x (x<0.5)
5.BA.25UM1977-03-COSiO:CaClHCa10(SiO4)(CO3)7(Cl,OH)2
5.BA.30Loseyite(Mn2+,Zn,Mg)4Zn3(CO3)2(OH)10
5.BA.30Sclarite(Zn,Mg,Mn2+)4Zn3(CO3)2(OH)10
11.6.1SmithsoniteZnCO3
11.6.2HydrozinciteZn5(CO3)2(OH)6
11.6.3Rosasite(Cu,Zn)2(CO3)(OH)2
11.6.4Zincrosasite(Zn,Cu)2(CO3)(OH)2
11.6.6Claraite(Cu,Zn)3(CO3)(OH)4 · 4H2O
11.6.7MinrecorditeCaZn(CO3)2
11.6.8Loseyite(Mn2+,Zn,Mg)4Zn3(CO3)2(OH)10
11.6.9Sclarite(Zn,Mg,Mn2+)4Zn3(CO3)2(OH)10
11.6.10OtaviteCdCO3

Other Names for Aurichalcite

Other Information

Other Information:
Soluble in acids and in ammonia.
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:
A very minor ore of zinc and copper.

References for Aurichalcite

Reference List:
Patrin (1788) Le Journal de physique et le radium, Paris: 33: 81 (as Calamine verdâtre).

Sage (1791) Le Journal de physique et le radium, Paris: 38: 155 (as Mine de Laiton de Pise en Toscane).

Böttger (1839) Annalen der Physik, Halle, Leipzig: 48: 495 (as Aurichalcit).

Delesse (1846) Annales de chimie et de physique, Paris: 18: 478 (as Buratite).

Glocker, E.F. (1847) Generum et specierum mineralien secundum ordines naturals digestorum synopsis. Halle: 230 (as Orichalcit).

Risse (1865) Verein der Rheinlande Corr.-Bl.: 22: 95 (as Messingblüthe).

Adam, M. (1869) Tableau minéralogique, Paris: 26 (as Messingite).

Belar (1889) Zeitschrift für Kristallographie, Mineralogie und Petrographie, Leipzig: 17: 113.

Penfield (1891) American Journal of Science: 41: 106.

Collins (1892) Mineralogical Magazine: 10: 15.

Cesàro (1897) Mém. Soc. roy. sc. Belg.: 53: 1.

D'Achiardi (1897) Att. Soc. tosc.: 16: 3.

Heddle, M.F. (1901) The Mineralogy of Scotland. 2 volumes, Edinburgh: 1: 146.

Navarro (1908) Bol. Soc. espan. Hist. nat.: 117.

Lecroix (1909): 739.

Navarro (1911) Zeitschrift für Kristallographie, Mineralogie und Petrographie, Leipzig: 49: 297.

Kato (1913) Journal of the Geological Society of Tokyo: 20: 9.

Ledoux (1917) Journal of the Washington Academy of Science: 7: 361.

Larsen, E.S. (1921) The Microscopic Determination of the Nonopaque Minerals, First edition, USGS Bulletin 679: 43.

Buttenbach (1924) Mém. Soc. roy. Sc. Liége [3]: 12: 3.

Pilipenko (1925) Min. Abs.: 2: 109.

Hintze, Carl (1929) Handbuch der Mineralogie. Berlin and Leipzig. 6 volumes: 1 [3A]: 3398.

Lauro (1938) Periodico de Mineralogia-Roma: 9: 105.

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: 249-250.

Jambor, J. L. and Pouliot, G. (1965): X-ray crystallography of aurichalcite and hydrozincite. Can. Mineral. 8, 385-389.

Canadian Mineralogist (1970): 8: 385-389.

Harding, M.M., B.M. Kariuki, R. Cernik, and G. Cressey (1994) The structure of aurichalcite, (Cu,Zn)5(OH)6(CO3)2, determined from a microcrystal. Acta Crystallographica B - Structural Science 50: 673-676.

American Mineralogist (1995): 80: 1076.

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, 8th. edition: 494.

Gorniy Zhournal: 8: 266-271.

Acta Crystallographica: B50: 673-676.

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.: 39.

Giester, G. & Rieck, B. (2014): Crystal structure refinement of aurichalcite, (Cu,Zn)5(CO3)2(OH)6, from the Lavrion Mining District, Greece. Neues Jahrbuch für Mineralogie, Abhandlungen 191, 225-232.

Internet Links for Aurichalcite

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

Localities for Aurichalcite

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  
Mindat.org is an outreach project of the Hudson Institute of Mineralogy, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.
Copyright © mindat.org and the Hudson Institute of Mineralogy 1993-2015, except where stated. Mindat.org relies on the contributions of thousands of members and supporters.
Privacy Policy - Terms & Conditions - Contact Us Current server date and time: April 21, 2015 09:23:18 Page generated: April 10, 2015 16:17:33