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Beryl

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Formula:
Be3Al2(Si6O18)
System:
Hexagonal
Colour:
Green, blue, yellow, ...
Lustre:
Vitreous, Sub-Vitreous, Waxy, Greasy
Hardness:
7½ - 8
Member of:
Name:
Possibly from the Greek "beryllos" which referred to a number of blue-green stones in antiquity.
May be confused with apatite.

The largest beryl crystal reported was 18 m long and 3.5 m wide from Malakialina, Madagascar, but in the absence of anything more than a personal communication, the report is doubtful.

Visit gemdat.org for gemological information about Beryl.

Classification of Beryl

Valid - first described prior to 1959 (pre-IMA) - "Grandfathered"
9.CJ.05

9 : SILICATES (Germanates)
C : Cyclosilicates
J : [Si6O18]12- 6-membered single rings (sechser-Einfachringe), without insular complex anions
61.1.1.1

61 : CYCLOSILICATES Six-Membered Rings
1 : Six-Membered Rings with [Si6O18] rings; possible (OH) and Al substitution
16.6.1

16 : Silicates Containing Aluminum and other Metals
6 : Aluminosilicates of Be
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Occurrences of Beryl

Geological Setting:
Commonly found in pegmatites. Red beryl is found in topaz rhyolites.

Physical Properties of Beryl

Vitreous, Sub-Vitreous, Waxy, Greasy
Colour:
Green, blue, yellow, white, pink, etc.
Streak:
White
Hardness (Mohs):
7½ - 8
Tenacity:
Brittle
Cleavage:
Imperfect/Fair
{0001}
Fracture:
Conchoidal
Density:
2.63 - 2.92 g/cm3 (Measured)    

Crystallography of Beryl

Crystal System:
Hexagonal
Class (H-M):
6/mmm (6/m 2/m 2/m) - Dihexagonal Dipyramidal
Space Group:
P6/mcc
Cell Parameters:
a = 9.21Å, c = 9.19Å
Ratio:
a:c = 1 : 0.998
Unit Cell Volume:
V 675.10 ų (Calculated from Unit Cell)
Z:
2

Crystallographic forms of Beryl

Crystal Atlas:
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Beryl no.12 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Beryl no.23 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Beryl no.24 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Beryl no.32 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Beryl no.98 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Beryl - Tabular {001}
3d models and HTML5 code kindly provided by www.smorf.nl.

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Crystal Structure

Structure
Reference
Artioli G Rinaldi R Stahl K Zanazzi P F (1993) Structure refinements of beryl by single-crystal neutron and X-ray diffraction Sample no. 2, aquamarine, probed with neutrons, T = 295 K. American Mineralogist 78:762-768.

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More Crystal Structures
Click here to view more crystal structures at the American Mineralogist Crystal Structure Database
X-Ray Powder Diffraction:
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Radiation - Copper Kα
Data Set:
Data courtesy of RRUFF project at University of Arizona, used with permission.
X-Ray Powder Diffraction Data:
d-spacingIntensity
7.98 (90)
4.60 (50)
3.99 (50)
3.25 (100)
3.01 (40)
2.87 (100)
2.52 (30)
1.99 (20)

Optical Data of Beryl

Type:
Uniaxial (-)
RI values:
nω = 1.568 - 1.602 nε = 1.564 - 1.595
Max Birefringence:
δ = 0.004 - 0.007
Image shows birefringence interference colour range (at 30µm thickness) and does not take into account mineral colouration.
Surface Relief:
Moderate

Chemical Properties of Beryl

Formula:
Be3Al2(Si6O18)
Essential elements:
All elements listed in formula:
Common Impurities:
Fe,Mn,Mg,Ca,Cr,Na,Li,Cs,O,H,OH,H2O,K,Rb

Relationship of Beryl to other Species

Member of:
Other Members of Group:
BazziteBe3Sc2(Si6O18)
PezzottaiteCs(Be2Li)Al2(Si6O18)
StoppaniiteBe3Fe23+(Si6O18) · H2O
9.CJ.05BazziteBe3Sc2(Si6O18)
9.CJ.05IndialiteMg2Al3(AlSi5O18)
9.CJ.05StoppaniiteBe3Fe23+(Si6O18) · H2O
9.CJ.10Cordierite(Mg,Fe)2Al3(AlSi5O18)
9.CJ.10Sekaninaite(Fe,Mg)2Al3(AlSi5O18)
9.CJ.15aCombeiteNa2Ca2(Si6O18)0.5
9.CJ.15bImandriteNa12Ca3Fe23+(Si6O18)2
9.CJ.15aKazakoviteNa6Mn2+Ti(Si6O18)
9.CJ.15cKoashviteNa6(Ca,Mn)(Ti,Fe)Si6O18 · H2O
9.CJ.15aLovozeriteNa2Ca(Zr,Ti)(Si6O12)[(OH)4O2] · H2O
9.CJ.15aTisinaliteNa3H3(Mn,Ca,Fe)TiSi6(O,OH)18 · 2H2O
9.CJ.15aZirsinaliteNa6(Ca,Mn2+,Fe2+)Zr(Si6O18)
9.CJ.15aLitvinskiteNa2(◻,Na,Mn)ZrSi6O12(OH,O)6
9.CJ.15aKapustiniteNa5(Na,Mn2+)<1Zr(H2Si6O18)
9.CJ.25BaratoviteKCa7(Ti,Zr)2Li3Si12O36F2
9.CJ.25KatayamaliteKLi3Ca7Ti2(SiO3)12(OH)2
9.CJ.25AleksandroviteKCa7Sn2Li3Si12O36F2
9.CJ.30DioptaseCuSiO3 · H2O
9.CJ.35KostyleviteK2Zr(Si3O9) · H2O
9.CJ.40PetarasiteNa5Zr2(Si6O18)(Cl,OH) · 2H2O
9.CJ.45Gerenite-(Y)(Ca,Na)2(Y,REE)3Si6O18 · 2H2O
9.CJ.50OdintsoviteK2Na4Ca3Ti2Be4Si12O38
9.CJ.55MathewrogersitePb7FeAl3GeSi12O36(OH,H2O)6
9.CJ.60PezzottaiteCs(Be2Li)Al2(Si6O18)
16.6.2EuclaseBeAl(SiO4)(OH)
16.6.3BaveniteCa4Be2Al2Si9O26(OH)2
16.6.4AminoffiteCa2(Be,Al)(Si2O7)(H2O,OH)
16.6.5MilariteK2Ca4Al2Be4Si24O60 · H2O
16.6.6LovdariteK2Na6Be4Si14O36•9H2O
16.6.7Surinamite(Mg,Fe)3Al4BeSi3O16
16.6.8Ferrotaaffeite-6N'3S(Be,Zn,Mg)FeAl4O8

Other Names for Beryl

Name in Other Languages:
Basque:Berilo
Bishnupriya Manipuri:বেরিলো
Bosnian (Latin Script):Beril
Bulgarian:Берил
Croatian:Beril
Czech:Beryl
Dutch:Beryl
Finnish:Berylli
French:Béryl
Galician:Berilo
Hebrew:בריל
Hungarian:Berill
Italian:Berillo
Japanese:緑柱石
Latin:Beryllus
Latvian:Berils
Lithuanian:Berilas
Low Saxon:Beryll
Polish:Beryl
Portuguese:Berilo
Romanian:Beril
Russian:Берилл
Serbian (Cyrillic Script):Берил
Simplified Chinese:绿柱石
绿色绿宝石
Slovak:Beryl
Swedish:Beryll
Traditional Chinese:綠柱石
Turkish:Beril
Ukrainian:Берил
Wolof:Beril

Other Information

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 Beryl

Reference List:
Scandale, E., Scordari, F., and Zarka, A. (1979a) étude des défauts dans des monocristaux natures de béryl. I. Observations des dislocations. Journal of Applied Crystallography: 12: 70-77.

Scandale, E., Scordari, F., and Zarka, A. (1979b) étude des défauts dans des monocristaux natures de béryl. II. Etude de croissance. Journal of Applied Crystallography: 12: 78-83.

Graziani, G., Lucchesi, S., and Scandale, E. (1990) General and Specific Growth Marks in Pegmatite Beryls. Physics and Chemistry of Minerals: 17: 379-384.

Scandale, E., Lucchesi, S., and Graziani, G. (1993) Improvements on the growth history reconstruction of a beryl crystal by growth marks. Neues Jahrbuch für Minweralogie Monatshefte: 4: 172-184.

American Mineralogist (1993): 78: 762-768.

Scandale, E. and Lucchesi, S. (2000) Growth and sector zoning in a beryl crystal. European Journal of Mineralogy: 12: 357-366.

H. A. Hänni and M. S. Krzemnicki (2003): Caesium-rich morganite from Afghanistan and Madagascar. Journal of Gemmology, 28, 417-429.

Beryl and Its Color Varieties, Extra Lapis English No. 7.

Internet Links for Beryl

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

Localities for Beryl

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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