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Azurite

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Formula:
Cu
 
3
(CO
 
3
)
 
2
(OH)
 
2
System:MonoclinicColour:Azure blue, blue, light ...
Lustre:VitreousHardness:3½ - 4
Name:From the ancient Persian lazhward, meaning "blue", in allusion to the color. Name changed to azurite in 1824 by Francois Sulpice Beudant.


A secondary copper mineral frequently found in the oxidized zones of Cu-bearing ore deposits.

Azurite is typically found as tabular to prismatic crystals of a deep "azure blue" color with splendent vitreous faces. There are over 45 well-known forms, and over 100 forms have been described. Azurite is often pseudomorphed to Malachite, and the two are very frequently found together.
Azurite may be confused with (the very rare) Mrázekite.

Visit gemdat.org for gemological information about Azurite. Currently in public beta-test.

Classification of Azurite

IMA status:Valid - first described prior to 1959 (pre-IMA) - "Grandfathered"
Strunz 8th edition ID:5/C.01-10
Nickel-Strunz 10th (pending) edition ID:5.BA.05

5 : CARBONATES (NITRATES)
B : Carbonates with additional anions, without H2O
A : With Cu, Co, Ni, Zn, Mg, Mn
Dana 7th edition ID:16.2.1.1
Dana 8th edition ID:16a.2.1.1

16a : ANHYDROUS CARBONATES CONTAINING HYDROXYL OR HALOGEN
2 : (AB)3(XO3)2Zq
Hey's CIM Ref.:11.2.2

11 : Carbonates
2 : Carbonates of Cu
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Type Occurrence of Azurite

Type Locality:Chessy copper mines, Chessy-les-Mines, Le Bois d'Oingt, Rhône, Rhône-Alpes, France
Year of Discovery:1824

Occurrences of Azurite

Geological Setting:Found largely in the oxidized portions of copper deposits, it is a secondary mineral formed by the action of carbonated water acting on copper-containing minerals, or from Cu-containing solutions, such as CuSO^4 or CuCl^2 reacting with limestones.

Physical Properties of Azurite

Lustre:Vitreous
Diaphaneity (Transparency):Transparent, Translucent
Colour:Azure blue, blue, light blue, or dark blue; light blue in transmitted light
Streak:Light blue
Hardness (Mohs):3½ - 4
Hardness Data:Measured
Tenacity:Brittle
Cleavage:Perfect
Perfect on {011}; on {100} fair; on {110} in traces.
Parting:None
Fracture:Conchoidal
Density (measured):3.77 g/cm3
Density (calculated):3.834 g/cm3

Crystallography of Azurite

Crystal System:Monoclinic
Class (H-M):2/m - Prismatic
Space Group:P21/b
Cell Parameters:a = 5Å, b = 5.84Å, c = 10.35Å
β = 92.33°
Ratio:a:b:c = 0.856 : 1 : 1.772
Unit Cell Volume:V 301.97 ų (Calculated from Unit Cell)
Z:2
Morphology:Tabular {001}, less common {102} or {102}; prismatic [001] or [010]; sometimes equant or even rhombohedral; faces may be wavy with striations on {001} parallel to "a", on {100} parallel to "b." May also be massive, stalactic, or botryoidal.
Twinning:Rare, across {101}, {102} or {001}.
Crystal Atlas:
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Azurite no.1 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Azurite no.87 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Azurite no.157 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Azurite no.301 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)

About Crystal Atlas

The mindat.org Crystal Atlas allows you to view a selection of crystal drawings of real and idealised crystal forms for this mineral and, in certain cases, 3d rotating crystal objects. The 3d models and HTML5 code are kindly provided by www.smorf.nl.

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Edge Lines | Miller Indicies | Axes

Transparency
Opaque | Translucent | Transparent

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Along a-axis | Along b-axis | Along c-axis | Start rotation | Stop rotation
X-Ray Powder Diffraction:
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Radiation - Copper Kα
Data Set:
Horizontal Axis: ° to ° Vertical Axis: % Source Data: Filtered Data:
Data courtesy of RRUFF project at University of Arizona, used with permission.
X-Ray Powder Diffraction:
d-spacingIntensity
5.15(60)
5.08(30)
3.67(50)
3.52(100)
2.54(30)
2.51(40)
2.29(40)
2.22(70)

Optical Data of Azurite

Type:Biaxial (+)
RI values: nα = 1.730 nβ = 1.758 nγ = 1.838
2V:Measured: 68° , Calculated: 64°
Maximum Birefringence:δ = 0.108

Chart shows birefringence interference colour range (at 30µm thickness) and does not take into account mineral colouration.
Surface Relief:High
Dispersion:relatively weak
Pleochroism:Visible
Comments:Pleochroic in blue, with absorption Z greater than Y greater than X.

Chemical Properties of Azurite

Formula:
Cu
 
3
(CO
 
3
)
 
2
(OH)
 
2
Simplified for copy/paste:Cu3(CO3)2(OH)2
Essential elements:C, Cu, H, O
All elements listed in formula:C, Cu, H, O

Relationship of Azurite to other Species

Common Associates:
WadTenoriteMalachiteLimoniteCuprite
CopperChrysocollaChalcociteCalciteBrochantite
AtacamiteAntlerite
Related Minerals - Nickel-Strunz Grouping):

- +
5.BA.10Georgeite
Cu
 
2
(CO
 
3
)(OH)
 
2
· 6H
 
2
O
5.BA.10Glaukosphaerite
(Cu,Ni)
 
2
(CO
 
3
)(OH)
 
2
5.BA.10Kolwezite
(Cu,Co)
 
2
(CO
 
3
)(OH)
 
2
5.BA.10Malachite
Cu
 
2
(CO
 
3
)(OH)
 
2
5.BA.10Mcguinnessite
(Mg,Cu)
 
2
(CO
 
3
)(OH)
 
2
5.BA.10Nullaginite
Ni
 
2
(CO
 
3
)(OH)
 
2
5.BA.10Pokrovskite
Mg
 
2
(CO
 
3
)(OH)
 
2
5.BA.10Rosasite
(Cu,Zn)
 
2
(CO
 
3
)(OH)
 
2
5.BA.10Zincrosasite
(Zn,Cu)
 
2
(CO
 
3
)(OH)
 
2
5.BA.10Chukanovite
Fe
2+
2
(CO
 
3
)(OH)
 
2
5.BA.15Aurichalcite
(Zn,Cu)
 
5
(CO
 
3
)
 
2
(OH)
 
6
5.BA.15Hydrozincite
Zn
 
5
(CO
 
3
)
 
2
(OH)
 
6
5.BA.20Holdawayite
Mn
 
6
(CO
 
3
)
 
2
(OH)
 
7
(Cl,OH)
5.BA.25Defernite
Ca
 
6
(CO
 
3
)
 
2-x
(SiO
 
4
)
 
x
(OH)
 
7
(Cl,OH)
 
1-2x
(x<0.5)
5.BA.25UM1977-03-COSiO:CaClH
Ca
 
10
(SiO
 
4
)(CO
 
3
)
 
7
(Cl,OH)
 
2
5.BA.30Loseyite
(Mn
2+
 
,Zn,Mg)
 
4
Zn
 
3
(CO
 
3
)
 
2
(OH)
 
10
5.BA.30Sclarite
(Zn,Mg,Mn
2+
 
)
 
4
Zn
 
3
(CO
 
3
)
 
2
(OH)
 
10
Related Minerals - Hey's Index Grouping:

- +
11.2.1Malachite
Cu
 
2
(CO
 
3
)(OH)
 
2
11.2.4Chalconatronite
Na
 
2
Cu(CO
 
3
)
 
2
· 3H
 
2
O
11.2.5Callaghanite
Cu
 
2
Mg
 
2
(CO
 
3
)(OH)
 
6
· 2H
 
2
O

Other Names for Azurite

Synonyms:
Armenite (of Delamétherie)Azure Copper OreAzurite (of Beudant)Blue Carbonate of CopperBlue Malachite
Chessy copperChessyliteLasurLasurite (of Haidinger)
Other Languages:
Basque:Azurita
Catalan:Atzurita
Czech:Azurit
Dutch:Azuriet
Esperanto:Azurito
Finnish:Atsuriitti
French:Azurite
Bleu de montagne
Cuivre azuré
Cuivre Carbonaté Bleu
Galician:Azurita
German:Azurit
Bergblau
Berglasur
Chessylit
Kupferlapis
Kupferlasur
Kupfer Lazur
Lazurit (of von Kobell)
Unächter Lasurstein
Greek:Αζουρίτης
Hebrew:אזוריט
אזורייט
Hungarian:Azurit
Italian:Azzurrite
Bleu di Monte
Rame carbonato azzurro
Japanese:藍銅鉱
Latin:Cæruleum
Cæruleum montanum
Cuprum lazureum
Lapis armenius
Lithuanian:Azuritas
Norwegian (Bokmål):Kobberlasur
Persian:لاجورد
Polish:Azuryt
Portuguese:Azurita
Romanian:Azurit
Russian:Азурит
Serbian (Cyrillic Script):Азурит
Simplified Chinese:蓝铜矿
兰铜矿
Slovak:Azurit
Slovenian:Azurit
Spanish:Azurita
Azzurrita
Chessylita
Cobre Azul
Swedish:Azurit
Koppar-Lazur
Traditional Chinese:藍銅礦
蘭銅礦
Ukrainian:Азурит
Vietnamese:Azurit
Varieties:
KupferblauZincazurite

Other Information

Fluorescence in UV light:None.
Other Information:Soluble in dilute acids, ammonia, and hot concentrated solutions of NaHCO3. Slowly decomposed with removal of CO2 by boiling, but not by cold, water.
Health Warning: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 copper.

References for Azurite

Reference List:

- +
Wallerius, J.G (1747) Mineralogia, eller Mineralriket. Stockholm: 280 (as Cæruleum montanum).

Stütz (1798) Einricht. nat., Vienna: 49 (as Unächter Lasurstein).

Beudant, F.S. (1824), Trailé élémentaire de Minéralogie, Paris: 417.

Haidinger, Wm. (1845) Handbuch der bestimmenden Mineralogie. Vienna: 508 (as Lasur).

Rose (1851) Annalen der Physik, Halle, Leipzig: 84: 484.

Breithaupt, A. (1852) Berg.- und hüttenmännisches Zeitung, Freiberg, Leipzig (merged into Glückauf): 11: 101 (as Zinkazurit).

Brooke, H.J. and Miller, W.H. (1852) Introduction to Mineralogy by Wm. Phillips, London, 1823. New edition by Brooke and Miller, London: 594 (as Chessylite).

Kobell, Fr. Von (1853): 32 (as Lasurit).

Dana, J.D. (1868) System of Mineralogy, 5th. Edition, New York: 715.

Schrauf (1871) Konigliche Akademie der Wissenschaften, Sitzber., Vienna: 64: 123.

Schröder (1874) Jb. Min.: 712.

Yeates (1889) American Journal of Science: 38: 405.

Dana, E.S. (1892) System of Mineralogy, 6th. Edition, New York: 295.

Lacroix (1909): 3: 756.

Merwin (1914) Journal of the Washington Academy of Science: 4: 253.

Schrader et al (1917) USGS Bulletin 624 (localities).

Goldschmidt, V. (1918) Atlas der Krystallformen. 9 volumes, atlas, and text: vol. 5: 85.

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

Palache, C. and Lewis (1927) American Mineralogist: 12: 99.

Stecher (1929) Neues Jahrbuch für Mineralogie, Geologie und Paleontologie, Beil.-Bd., Heidelberg, Stuttgart: 59A: 159.

Zedlitz (1929) Zeitschrift für Kristallographie, Mineralogie und Petrographie, Leipzig: 71: 1.

Brasseur (1931) Zeitschrift für Kristallographie, Mineralogie und Petrographie, Leipzig: 77: 177.

Brasseur (1932) Zeitschrift für Kristallographie, Mineralogie und Petrographie, Leipzig: 82: 195.

Brasseur (1933) Soc. roy. sc. Liége, Mem.: 18: 1.

Galbraith (1941) Arizona Bureau of Mines, Geology Series, Bull. 149.

Palache and Lewis (1942) American Mineralogist: 27: 334.

Beck (1946) Ph.D. thesis, Harvard University (unpublished).

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: 264-269.

Zeitschrift für Kristallographie: 135: 416-436.

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: 482.

Best Localities for Azurite

Best of Species:Azurite

Internet Links for Azurite

Search Engines:
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  • External Links:
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  • Look for Azurite on Wikipedia
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  • Raman and XRD data at RRUFF project
  • American Mineralogist Crystal Structure Database
  • Azurite details from Handbook of Mineralogy (PDF)
  • Mineral Dealers:
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  • Azurite specimens for sale - minfind.com
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  • Specimens:The following Azurite specimens are currently listed for sale on minfind.com.

    Localities for Azurite

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