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Improving Mindat.orgHydroniumjarosite problem

2nd Jan 2011 13:58 UTCAnatoly Kasatkin

Dear mineralogical friends,

Happy New Year to everybody!

Mindat mentions many localities for hydroniumjarosite, however, during our systematic studies within several years of many specimens labelled as such we were never able to find even one true sample with the dominant H3O+ group.

In total, about 20 "hydroniumjarosites" from different localities were investigated but none of them contained H3O as dominant cation. For ex., we investigated samples from Outalpa Mine, Australia; Boss Mine, NV, USA; Rustler Mine and Eureka Hill Mine, UT, USA; Organ District, NM, USA; Lavrion, Greece and others and all of them were essentially Natrojarosite or Jarosite.

Our latest investigation of "hydroniumjarosite" from Reiche Zeche Mine, Saxony, Germany (similar to the one pictured at Mindat's main page for this mineral species) showed it to be Plumbojarosite. IRS-analysis showed no H3O group at all and only very little of H2O while quantitative EDS showed Pb, Fe and S in good stoichiometry (the initial mistake in ID was perhaps due to the fact that XRD pattern are similar for hydronium- and plumbojarosite and on routine EDS Pb and S peaks overlap so could be overlooked).

Of course, all the above doesn't necessarily mean that hydroniumjarosite doesn't exist at all in the above mentioned localities but we were no luck to find it.

Taking all this in consideration, I would highly appreciated if someone who has the REAL hydroniumjarosite (studied and confirmed by IRS as having H3O+ dominant cation, EDS+XRD only being NOT convincing ID methods in this case!) can send me a PM (I'll give my direct email there) and send me a small sample or fragment. I especially address to our colleagues from Poland since I was unable to encounter any samples of hydroniumjarosite from there and since it's type locality they should be first to be investigated. I can provide with very rare minerals in exchange if necessary.

Thanks in advance and best regards,


2nd Jan 2011 21:36 UTCRock Currier Expert


Well, it looks like you have stumbled onto another can of worms that mindat will not be able to sort our anytime soon. Thank you for bringing this to our attention. I guess we are better off knowing about it than not. I personally would have to think pretty hard about how to go about sorting this mess out. Perhaps you might have some suggestions.

2nd Jan 2011 21:39 UTCJolyon Ralph Founder

Well, on the contrary, these are the sorts of problems where mindat is so much better than traditional media, because as better information comes along and more accurate analysis is done, we can update things with relative ease.

Thanks Anatoly, I look foward to conclusions of your study.

2nd Jan 2011 22:06 UTCPeter Haas Expert

I have added a note to the page of hydroniumjarosite:

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