Mindat Logo

Chrysotile

This page is currently not sponsored. Click here to sponsor this page.



Formula:
Mg
 
3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
System:MonoclinicColour:Green
Lustre:SilkyHardness:
Member of:Kaolinite-Serpentine Group
Name:Named in 1843 by Franz von Kobell from the Greek chrysos - "gold" and tilos - "fiber."


Serpentine Group.
Polytypes are clinochrysotile, orthochrysotile, and parachrysotile. Clinochrysotile represents almost all of the known chrysotile specimens. Orthochrysotile is rare and parachrysotile is very rare.
Lizardite and antigorite are closely related Serpentine Group species.

Most of the asbestos that was mined worldwide, consists of chrysotile.

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

Classification of Chrysotile

IMA status:Valid - first described prior to 1959 (pre-IMA) - "Grandfathered"
Strunz 8th edition ID:8/DX.00-00
Strunz 9th edition ID:9.ED.15
Nickel-Strunz 10th (pending) edition ID:9.ED.15

9 : SILICATES (Germanates)
E : Phyllosilicates
D : Phyllosilicates with kaolinite layers composed of tetrahedral and octahedral nets
Dana 8th edition ID:71.1.5.1

71 : PHYLLOSILICATES Sheets of Six-Membered Rings
1 : Sheets of 6-membered rings with 1:1 layers
Hey's CIM Ref.:14.4.4

14 : Silicates not Containing Aluminum
4 : Silicates of Mg
mindat.org URL:http://www.mindat.org/min-975.html
Please feel free to link to this page.

Type Occurrence of Chrysotile

Type Locality:Zloty Stok (Reichenstein), Ząbkowice District, Lower Silesia (Dolnośląskie), Poland

Physical Properties of Chrysotile

Lustre:Silky
Colour:Green
Hardness (Mohs):

Crystallography of Chrysotile

Crystal System:Monoclinic

Optical Data of Chrysotile

Type:Biaxial
RI values: nα = 1.569 nγ = 1.570
Maximum Birefringence:δ = 0.001

Chart shows birefringence interference colour range (at 30µm thickness) and does not take into account mineral colouration.
Surface Relief:Moderate
Dispersion:r > v or r < v

Chemical Properties of Chrysotile

Formula:
Mg
 
3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Simplified for copy/paste:Mg3(Si2O5)(OH)4
Essential elements:H, Mg, O, Si
All elements listed in formula:H, Mg, O, Si

Relationship of Chrysotile to other Species

Member of:Kaolinite-Serpentine Group
Other Members of Group:

- +
Amesite
Mg
 
2
Al(AlSiO
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Antigorite
Mg
 
3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Baumite
(Mg,Al,Mn,Zn,Fe)
 
3
(Si,Al)
 
2
O
 
5
(OH)
 
4
Berthierine
(Fe
2+
 
,Fe
3+
 
,AlMg)
 
2-3
((Si,Al)
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Brindleyite
(Ni,Al)
 
3
(Si,Al)
 
2
O
 
5
(OH)
 
4
Caryopilite
(Mn,Mg)
 
3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Clinochrysotile
Cronstedtite
Fe
2+
2
Fe
3+
 
((Si,Fe
3+
 
)
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Dickite
Al
 
2
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Fraipontite
(Zn,Al)
 
3
((Si,Al)
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Greenalite
Fe
 
2-3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Halloysite
Al
 
2
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Kaolinite
Al
 
2
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Kellyite
Mn
2+
2
Al(AlSiO
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Lizardite
Mg
 
3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Manandonite
LiAl
 
4
(BSi
 
3
O
 
10
)(OH)
 
6
Nacrite
Al
 
2
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Népouite
(Ni,Mg)
 
3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Odinite
(Fe,Mg,Al,Fe,Ti,Mn)
 
2.4
((Si,Al)
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Orthochrysotile
Parachrysotile
Pecoraite
Ni
 
3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
Vorhauserite
Related Minerals - Nickel-Strunz Grouping):

- +
9.ED.05Dickite
Al
 
2
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.05Kaolinite
Al
 
2
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.05Nacrite
Al
 
2
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.05Odinite
(Fe,Mg,Al,Fe,Ti,Mn)
 
2.4
((Si,Al)
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.10Halloysite
Al
 
2
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.10Hisingerite
Fe
3+
2
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
· 2H
 
2
O
9.ED.10Halloysite-7Å
Al
 
2
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.15Amesite
Mg
 
2
Al(AlSiO
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.15Antigorite
Mg
 
3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.15Berthierine
(Fe
2+
 
,Fe
3+
 
,AlMg)
 
2-3
((Si,Al)
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.15Brindleyite
(Ni,Al)
 
3
(Si,Al)
 
2
O
 
5
(OH)
 
4
9.ED.15Caryopilite
(Mn,Mg)
 
3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.15Cronstedtite
Fe
2+
2
Fe
3+
 
((Si,Fe
3+
 
)
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.15Fraipontite
(Zn,Al)
 
3
((Si,Al)
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.15Greenalite
Fe
 
2-3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.15Kellyite
Mn
2+
2
Al(AlSiO
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.15Lizardite
Mg
 
3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.15Manandonite
LiAl
 
4
(BSi
 
3
O
 
10
)(OH)
 
6
9.ED.15Népouite
(Ni,Mg)
 
3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.15Pecoraite
Ni
 
3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.15Guidottiite
Mn
 
2
Fe
3+
 
(Fe
3+
 
SiO
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
9.ED.20Allophane
(Al
 
2
O
 
3
)(SiO
 
2
)
 
1.3-2
· 2.5-3H
 
2
O
9.ED.20Chrysocolla
Cu
 
2-x
Al
 
x
(H
 
2-x
Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
· nH
 
2
O (x < 1)
9.ED.20Imogolite
Al
 
2
SiO
 
3
(OH)
 
4
9.ED.20Neotocite
(Mn,Fe,Mg)SiO
 
3
· H
 
2
O
9.ED.25Bismutoferrite
Fe
3+
2
Bi(SiO
 
4
)
 
2
(OH)
9.ED.25Chapmanite
Fe
3+
2
Sb
3+
 
(SiO
 
4
)
 
2
(OH)
Related Minerals - Hey's Index Grouping:

- +
14.4.1Forsterite
Mg
 
2
SiO
 
4
14.4.2Enstatite
MgSiO
 
3
14.4.3Clinoenstatite
MgSiO
 
3
14.4.5Clinochrysotile
14.4.6Orthochrysotile
14.4.7Parachrysotile
14.4.8Lizardite
Mg
 
3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
14.4.9Talc
Mg
 
3
(Si
 
4
O
 
10
)(OH)
 
2
14.4.10Spadaite
MgSiO
 
2
(OH)
 
2
· H
 
2
O (?)
14.4.11Sepiolite
Mg
 
4
(Si
 
6
O
 
15
)(OH)
 
2
· 6H
 
2
O
14.4.12Loughlinite
Na
 
2
Mg
 
3
Si
 
6
O
 
16
· 8H
 
2
O
14.4.13Eifelite
KNa
 
3
Mg
 
4
Si
 
12
O
 
30
14.4.14Stevensite
(Ca,Na)
 
x
Mg
 
3-x
(Si
 
4
O
 
10
)(OH)
 
2
14.4.15Antigorite
Mg
 
3
(Si
 
2
O
 
5
)(OH)
 
4
14.4.16 Magnesio-anthophyllite

Other Names for Chrysotile

Synonyms:
α-ChrysotileBostoniteCanadian asbestosChrysotile-alphaCyphoîte
KarystioliteKrysolithKuphoiteKupholiteLefkasbest
LefkasbestosPicrosminePikrosminWhite Asbestos
Other Languages:
German:Bostonit
Chrysotil
Karystiolit
Kuphoit
Kupholit
Schweizerit
Weißasbest
Simplified Chinese:纤蛇纹石
纤维蛇纹石
Spanish:Bostonita
Karystiolita
Kuphoita
Kupholita
Varieties:
Aluminian ChrysotileChrysotilasbestIshkildite

Polytypes for Chrysotile

Polytypes:
ClinochrysotileOrthochrysotileParachrysotile

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.

References for Chrysotile

Reference List:

- +
Whittaker, E.J.W. (1953) The structure of chrysotile. Acta Crystallographica: 6: 747-748.

Whittaker, E.J.W. (1956a) The structure of chrysotile . II. Clinochrysotile. Acta Crystallographica: 9: 855-862.

Whittaker, E.J.W. (1956b) The structure of chrysotile . III. Orthochrysotile. Acta Crystallographica: 9: 862-864.

Whittaker, E.J.W. (1956b) The structure of chrysotile . IV. Parachrysotile. Acta Crystallographica: 9: 865-867.

Yada, K. (1971) Study of microstructure of chrysotile asbestos by high-resolution electron microscope. Acta Crystallographica: 27: 659-664.

Wicks, F.J. (1979) Mineralogy, chemistry and crystallography of chrysotile asbestos. Section I, Part B. In: Mineralogical Techniques of Asbestos Determination (R.L. Ledoux, ed.). Mineralogical Association of Canada, Short Course Handbook 4: 35-78.

Evans, Bernard W. (2004): The Serpentinite Multisystem Revisited: Chrysotile is Metastable. International Geology Review, 46, 479–506.

Ristić, M. et al. (2010): Spectroscopic characterization of chrysotile asbestos from different regions. Journal of Molecular Structure (in press).

Internet Links for Chrysotile

Search Engines:
  • Look for Chrysotile on Google
  • Look for Chrysotile images on Google
  • External Links:
  • Look for Chrysotile on Webmineral
  • Look for Chrysotile on Athena Mineralogy
  • Look for Chrysotile on Wikipedia
  • Look for Chrysotile on Mineralien Atlas
  • Raman and XRD data at RRUFF project
  • American Mineralogist Crystal Structure Database
  • Mineral Dealers:
  • Chrysotile specimens for sale - minfind.com
  • Fabre Minerals - search for Chrysotile specimens
  • Top quality minerals from Kristalle of California
  • Buy from McDougall Minerals
  • SpiriferMinerals.com - high quality low prices
  • Wilensky Fine Minerals
  • Search for Chrysotile on Well-Arranged Molecules
  • Buy from David K Joyce minerals
  • rare and unusual minerals mainly crystallized
  • Mineral Classics - Worldwide Collector Quality Minerals and Gems
  • Lapis Mineral Magazin
  • Fine Minerals from Weinrich Minerals, Inc.
  • Specimens:The following Chrysotile specimens are currently listed for sale on minfind.com.

    Localities for Chrysotile

    The 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  
    Search Google  
    Copyright © Jolyon Ralph and Ida Chau 1993-2014. Site Map. Locality, mineral & photograph data are the copyright of the individuals who submitted them. Site hosted & developed by Jolyon Ralph. Mindat.org is an online information resource dedicated to providing free mineralogical information to all. Mindat relies on the contributions of thousands of members and supporters. Mindat does not offer minerals for sale. If you would like to add information to improve the quality of our database, then click here to register.
    Current server date and time: July 21, 2014 13:12:43
    Mineral and Locality Search
    Mineral:
    and/or Locality:
    Options
    Fade toolbar when not in focusFix toolbar to bottom of page
    Hide Social Media Links
    Slideshow frame delay seconds