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Chalcopyrite

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Formula:
CuFeS
 
2
System:TetragonalColour:Brass yellow, often with ...
Lustre:MetallicHardness:3½ - 4
Member of:Chalcopyrite Group
Name:Named in 1725 by Johann Friedrich Henckel from the Greek "chalkos", copper, and "pyrites", strike fire.


Chalcopyrite Group.
Chalcopyrite-Eskebornite Series.

A major ore of copper. Common in sulfide veins and disseminated in igneous rocks.
Weathering may lead to the formation of malachite, azurite, brochantite, langite and numerous other secondary copper minerals.

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Classification of Chalcopyrite

IMA status:Valid - first described prior to 1959 (pre-IMA) - "Grandfathered"
Strunz 8th edition ID:2/C.03-10
Nickel-Strunz 10th (pending) edition ID:2.CB.10a

2 : SULFIDES and SULFOSALTS (sulfides, selenides, tellurides; arsenides, antimonides, bismuthides; sulfarsenites, sulfantimonites, sulfbismuthites, etc.)
C : Metal Sulfides, M: S = 1: 1 (and similar)
B : With Zn, Fe, Cu, Ag, etc.
Dana 7th edition ID:2.9.1.1
Dana 8th edition ID:2.9.1.1

2 : SULFIDES
9 : AmBnXp, with (m+n):p = 1:1
Hey's CIM Ref.:3.1.25

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

Geological Setting:It is the most abundant copper-bearing mineral and is widespread. It is a primary mineral in hydrothermal veins, disseminations and massive replacements; the principal copper mineral of porphyry-copper deposits.

Physical Properties of Chalcopyrite

Lustre:Metallic
Diaphaneity (Transparency):Opaque
Colour:Brass yellow, often with an iridescent tarnish.
Streak:Greenish black
Hardness (Mohs):3½ - 4
Hardness (Vickers):VHN100=187
Hardness Data:Measured
Tenacity:Brittle
Cleavage:Poor/Indistinct
Indistinct on {011}, sometimes distinct.
Fracture:Irregular/Uneven
Density (measured):4.1 - 4.3 g/cm3
Density (calculated):4.18 g/cm3

Crystallography of Chalcopyrite

Crystal System:Tetragonal
Class (H-M):4 2m - Scalenohedral
Space Group:I4 2d
Cell Parameters:a = 5.289Å, c = 10.423Å
Ratio:a:c = 1 : 1.971
Unit Cell Volume:V 291.57 ų (Calculated from Unit Cell)
Z:4
Morphology:Typically found as equant to wedge-shaped tetrahedral crystals, often modified by scalenohedral faces. Major deposits of massive material are known.
Twinning:Twinned on {112} and {012}, penetration or cyclic.
Crystal Atlas:
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Chalcopyrite no.13 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Chalcopyrite no.19 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Chalcopyrite no.37 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Chalcopyrite no.58 - 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
3.04(100)
2.64(10)
1.87(20)
1.86(40)
1.59(300
1.57(10)
1.21(10)
1.08(10)

Chemical Properties of Chalcopyrite

Formula:
CuFeS
 
2
Simplified for copy/paste:CuFeS2
Essential elements:Cu, Fe, S
All elements listed in formula:Cu, Fe, S
Common Impurities:Ag,Au,In,Tl,Se,Te

Relationship of Chalcopyrite to other Species

Series:Forms a series with Eskebornite (see here)
Member of:Chalcopyrite Group
Other Members of Group:

- +
Eskebornite
CuFeSe
 
2
Gallite
CuGaS
 
2
Laforêtite
AgInS
 
2
Lenaite
AgFeS
 
2
Roquesite
CuInS
 
2
Common Associates:
TennantiteSphaleriteSideriteQuartzPyrrhotite
PyriteMalachiteDolomiteCalciteBrochantite
AzuriteTetrahedriteBaryte
Related Minerals - Nickel-Strunz Grouping):

- +
2.CB.05aColoradoite
HgTe
2.CB.05aHawleyite
CdS
2.CB.05aMetacinnabar
HgS
2.CB.05cPolhemusite
(Zn,Hg)S
2.CB.05bSakuraiite
(Cu,Zn,Fe,In,Sn)S
2.CB.05aSphalerite
ZnS
2.CB.05aStilleite
ZnSe
2.CB.05aTiemannite
HgSe
2.CB.05UM1998-15-S:CuFeZn
Cu
 
2
Fe
 
3
Zn
 
5
S
 
10
2.CB.05aRudashevskyite
(Fe,Zn)S
2.CB.10aEskebornite
CuFeSe
 
2
2.CB.10aGallite
CuGaS
 
2
2.CB.10bHaycockite
Cu
 
4
Fe
 
5
S
 
8
2.CB.10aLenaite
AgFeS
 
2
2.CB.10bMooihoekite
Cu
 
9
Fe
 
9
S
 
16
2.CB.10bPutoranite
Cu
 
9
(Fe,Ni)
 
9
S
 
16
2.CB.10aRoquesite
CuInS
 
2
2.CB.10bTalnakhite
Cu
 
9
(Fe,Ni)
 
8
S
 
16
2.CB.10aLaforêtite
AgInS
 
2
2.CB.15aČernýite
Cu
 
2
(Cd,Zn,Fe)SnS
 
4
2.CB.15aFerrokesterite
Cu
 
2
(Fe,Zn)SnS
 
4
2.CB.15aHocartite
Ag
 
2
(Fe
2+
 
,Zn)SnS
 
4
2.CB.15aIdaite
Cu
 
5
FeS
 
6
2.CB.15aKesterite
Cu
 
2
(Zn,Fe)SnS
 
4
2.CB.15aKuramite
Cu
 
3
SnS
 
4
2.CB.15bMohite
Cu
 
2
SnS
 
3
2.CB.15aPirquitasite
Ag
 
2
ZnSnS
 
4
2.CB.15aStannite
Cu
 
2
(Fe,Zn)SnS
 
4
2.CB.15cStannoidite
Cu
+
6
Cu
2+
2
(Fe
2+
 
,Zn)
 
3
Sn
 
2
S
 
12
2.CB.15aVelikite
Cu
 
2
HgSnS
 
4
2.CB.15cUM2006-11-S:CuFeGeZn
Cu
 
8
(Fe,Zn)
 
3
Ge
 
2
S
 
12
(?)
2.CB.20Chatkalite
Cu
 
6
FeSn
 
2
S
 
8
2.CB.20Mawsonite
Cu
 
6
Fe
 
2
SnS
 
8
2.CB.30Colusite
Cu
 
26
V
 
2
(As,Sn,Sb)
 
6
S
 
32
2.CB.30Germanite
Cu
 
13
Fe
 
2
Ge
 
2
S
 
16
2.CB.30Germanocolusite
Cu
 
26
V
 
2
(Ge,As)
 
6
S
 
32
2.CB.30Nekrasovite
Cu
 
26
V
 
2
(Sn,As,Sb)
 
6
S
 
32
2.CB.30Stibiocolusite
Cu
 
13
V
 
4
(Sb,Sn,As)
 
3
S
 
16
2.CB.30Ovamboite
Cu
 
20
(Fe,Cu,Zn)
 
6
W
 
2
Ge
 
6
S
 
32
2.CB.30Maikainite
Cu
 
20
(Fe,Cu)
 
6
Mo
 
2
Ge
 
6
S
 
32
2.CB.35aHemusite
Cu
 
6
SnMoS
 
8
2.CB.35aKiddcreekite
Cu
 
6
SnWS
 
8
2.CB.35aPolkovicite
(Fe,Pb)
 
3
(Ge,Fe)
 
1-x
S
 
4
2.CB.35aRenierite
(Cu,Zn)
 
11
(Ge,As)
 
2
Fe
 
4
S
 
16
2.CB.35aVinciennite
Cu
+
7
Cu
2+
3
Fe
2+
2
Fe
3+
2
Sn(As,Sb)S
 
16
2.CB.35aMorozeviczite
(Pb,Fe)
 
3
Ge
 
1-x
S
 
4
2.CB.35bCatamarcaite
Cu
 
6
GeWS
 
8
2.CB.40Lautite
CuAsS
2.CB.45Cadmoselite
CdSe
2.CB.45Greenockite
CdS
2.CB.45Wurtzite
(Zn,Fe)S
2.CB.45Rambergite
MnS
2.CB.45Buseckite
(Fe,Zn,Mn)S
2.CB.55aCubanite
CuFe
 
2
S
 
3
2.CB.55bIsocubanite
CuFe
 
2
S
 
3
2.CB.60Picotpaulite
TlFe
 
2
S
 
3
2.CB.60Raguinite
TlFeS
 
2
2.CB.65Argentopyrite
AgFe
 
2
S
 
3
2.CB.65Sternbergite
AgFe
 
2
S
 
3
2.CB.70Sulvanite
Cu
 
3
VS
 
4
2.CB.75Vulcanite
CuTe
2.CB.80Empressite
AgTe
2.CB.85Muthmannite
AuAgTe
 
2
Related Minerals - Hey's Index Grouping:

- +
3.1.1Chalcocite
Cu
 
2
S
3.1.2Djurleite
Cu
 
31
S
 
16
3.1.3Digenite
Cu
 
9
S
 
5
3.1.4Anilite
Cu
 
7
S
 
4
3.1.5Roxbyite
Cu
 
9
S
 
5
3.1.6Spionkopite
Cu
 
39
S
 
28
3.1.7Geerite
Cu
 
8
S
 
5
3.1.8Covellite
CuS
3.1.9Berzelianite
Cu
 
2
Se
3.1.10Bellidoite
Cu
 
2
Se
3.1.11Umangite
Cu
 
3
Se
 
2
3.1.12Yarrowite
Cu
 
9
S
 
8
3.1.13Athabascaite
Cu
 
5
Se
 
4
3.1.14Klockmannite
CuSe
3.1.15Krut'aite
CuSe
 
2
3.1.16Weissite
Cu
 
2-x
Te
3.1.17Rickardite
Cu
 
7
Te
 
5
3.1.18Vulcanite
CuTe
3.1.19Bambollaite
Cu(Se,Te)
 
2
3.1.20Lautite
CuAsS
3.1.21Mgriite
Cu
 
3
AsSe
 
3
3.1.22Cubanite
CuFe
 
2
S
 
3
3.1.23Bornite
Cu
 
5
FeS
 
4
3.1.24Fukuchilite
Cu
 
3
FeS
 
8
3.1.26Mooihoekite
Cu
 
9
Fe
 
9
S
 
16
3.1.27Haycockite
Cu
 
4
Fe
 
5
S
 
8
3.1.28Isocubanite
CuFe
 
2
S
 
3
3.1.29Idaite
Cu
 
5
FeS
 
6
3.1.30Nukundamite
Cu
 
3.4
Fe
 
0.6
S
 
4
3.1.31Putoranite
Cu
 
9
(Fe,Ni)
 
9
S
 
16
3.1.32Orickite
2CuFeS
 
2
· H
 
2
O
3.1.33Eskebornite
CuFeSe
 
2
3.1.34Chaméanite
(Cu,Fe)
 
4
As(Se,S)
 
4
3.1.35Talnakhite
Cu
 
9
(Fe,Ni)
 
8
S
 
16
Related Minerals - Dana Grouping):

- +
2.9.1.0Stannite Group
A
 
2
DEX
 
4

Other Names for Chalcopyrite

Synonyms:
ChalkopyriteCopper PyritesCupropyriteGelferzKopparglasertz
KupfereisenerzKupfereisenerzkiesKupferkisTowaniteYellow Copper
Yellow Copper OreYellow Pyrite
Other Languages:
Basque:Kalkopirita
Bulgarian:Халкопирит
Catalan:Calcopirita
Czech:Chalkopyrit
Dutch:Chalcopyriet
Finnish:Kuparikiisu
French:Chalcopyrite
Cuivre Jaune
Cuivre Pyriteux
Galician:Calcopirita
German:Chalkopyrit
Chalcopyrit
Cupropyrit
Gelbkupfererz
Kupferkies
Towanit
Hebrew:כלקופיריט
קלקופיריט
Hungarian:Kalkopirit
Italian:Calcopirite
Rame giallo
Japanese:黄銅鉱
Lithuanian:Chalkopiritas
Low Saxon:Chalkopyrit
Norwegian (Bokmål):Kopperkis
Kobberkis
Polish:Chalkopiryt
Portuguese:Calcopirita
Romanian:Calcopirită
Russian:Халькопирит
Simplified Chinese:黄铜矿
Slovak:Chalkopyrit
Spanish:Chalcopirita
Chalcopyrita
Chalkopyrita
Cupropyrita
Pirita de Cobre
Towanita
Swedish:Kopparkis
Traditional Chinese:黃銅礦
Ukrainian:Халькопірит
Varieties:
Auriferous ChalcopyriteBlister CopperStannian Chalcopyrite

Other Information

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:It is the principal ore of copper.

References for Chalcopyrite

Reference List:

- +
Palache, Charles, Harry Berman & Clifford Frondel (1944), The System of Mineralogy of James Dwight Dana and Edward Salisbury Dana Yale University 1837-1892, Volume I: Elements, Sulfides, Sulfosalts, Oxides. John Wiley and Sons, Inc., New York. 7th edition, revised and enlarged, 834pp.: 219-224.

Hall, S.R. and Stewart, J.M. (1973) The crystal structure refinement of chalcopyrite, CuFeS2. Acta Crystallographica: B29: 579-585.

Hall, S.R. (1975) Crystal structures of the chalcpyrite series. Canadian Mineralogist: 13: 168-172.

Robie, R.A., Wiggins, L.B., Barton, P.B., Jr., and Hemingway, B.S. (1985) Low-temperature heat capacity and entropy of chalcopyrite (CuFeS2): estimates of the standard molar enthalpy and Gibbs free energy of formation of chalcopyrite and bornite (Cu5FeS4). Journal of Chemical Thermodynamics: 17: 481-488.

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: 87.

Internet Links for Chalcopyrite

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  • Raman and XRD data at RRUFF project
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    Localities for Chalcopyrite

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