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Sphalerite Group

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A = Cd, Hg, Zn, Mn, Fe, Cu; X = S, Se, Te
Crystal System:
The diamond structure has two interpenetrating cubic close packed carbon lattices. Each atom of theses lattices is tetrahedrally coordinated by 4 atoms of the other lattice. If one of these lattices is replaced by cations (A) and the other replaced by anions (X), where X = S, Se, Te we get the sphalerite group.

Although the members can be lab grown as solution series, geochemical segregation usually gives fairly pure end members.

Compare Wurtzite Group.

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Chemical Properties of Sphalerite GroupHide


A = Cd, Hg, Zn, Mn, Fe, Cu; X = S, Se, Te

Crystallography of Sphalerite GroupHide

Crystal System:
Class (H-M):
4 3m - Hextetrahedral
Composite and twinned crystals are common.

Relationship of Sphalerite Group to other SpeciesHide

Group Members:
Browneite MnS Iso. 4 3m : F4 3m
Coloradoite HgTeIso. m3m (4/m 3 2/m)
Hawleyite CdSIso. 4 3m : F4 3m
Ishiharaite (Cu,Ga,Fe,In,Zn)SIso. 4 3m : F4 3m
Metacinnabar HgSIso. 4 3m : F4 3m
Rudashevskyite (Fe,Zn)SIso. 4 3m : F4 3m
Sphalerite ZnSIso. 4 3m : F4 3m
Stilleite ZnSe
Tiemannite HgSe

Other InformationHide

Health Risks:
No information on health risks for this material has been entered into the database. You should always treat mineral specimens with care.

Sphalerite Group in petrologyHide

Common component of (items highlighted in red)

Internet Links for Sphalerite GroupHide

Significant localities for Sphalerite GroupHide

Showing 48 significant localities out of 22,488 recorded on

This 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.

Locality ListHide

- This locality has map coordinates listed. - This locality has estimated coordinates. ⓘ - Click for further information on this occurrence. ? - Indicates mineral may be doubtful at this locality. - Good crystals or important locality for species. - World class for species or very significant. (TL) - Type Locality for a valid mineral species. (FRL) - First Recorded Locality for everything else (eg varieties). Struck out - Mineral was erroneously reported from this locality. Faded * - Never found at this locality but inferred to have existed at some point in the past (eg from pseudomorphs.)

All localities listed without proper references should be considered as questionable.
  • Catamarca
    • Andalgalá Department
      • Capillitas Mine
[Ishiharaite] Márquez-Zavaliá, M.F., Galliski, M., Drábek, M., Vymazalová, A., Watanabe, Y., Murakami, H. and Bernhardt, H.-J. (2014) Ishiharaite, IMA 2013-119. CNMNC Newsletter No. 19, February 2014, page 170; Mineralogical Magazine, 78, 165-170.; Márquez-Zavalía, M.F., Galliski, M.Á., Drábek, M., Vymazalová, A., Watanabe, Y., Murakami, H., Bernhardt, H.-J. (2014): Ishiharaite, (Cu,Ga,Fe,In,Zn)S, a new mineral from the Capillitas Mine, Northwestern Argentina. Canadian Mineralogist, 52, 969-980
  • Tucumán
    • Burruyacú Department
      • Sierra de La Ramada
[Sphalerite] Raúl Jorge Tauber Larry´s collection.
  • Carinthia
    • Gailtaler Alpen & Karnische Alpen
      • Bleiberg District
        • Kreuth
[Sphalerite] G. Niedermayr, I. Praetzel: Mineralien Kärntens, 1995
  • Ağcabədi District (Aghjabadi)
    • Shusha
[Rudashevskyite] S. N. Britvin (2008): Rudashevskyite, Fe-dominant analogue of sphalerite, a new mineral: description and crystal structure. Am. Mineral. 93, 902-909.
  • Ontario
    • Wellington Co.
      • Guelph Township
[Sphalerite] Reiner Mielke Ray Lehoux
  • Yukon
    • Mayo Mining District
      • Galena Hill
        • Calumet
[Hawleyite] TRAILL, R.J. & BOYLE, R.W. (1955): Hawleyite, isometric cadmium sulphide, a new mineral. American Mineralogist 40, 555-559.
Democratic Republic of Congo (Zaïre)
  • Katanga (Shaba)
    • Kambove District
      • Shinkolobwe
[Stilleite] Ramdohr, P. (1956) Stilleit, ein neues Mineral, natürliches Zinkselenid, von Shinkolobwe. Geotektonisches Symposium zu Ehren von Hans Stille, 481–483. (in German); MinRec 20:287-288; Econ Geol (1997) 92:468-484
  • Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes
    • Isère
      • La Mure
  • Grand Est
    • Haut-Rhin
      • Cernay
        • Steinbach
          • Silberthal
[Sphalerite] J.-L. Hohl: "Minéraux et Mines du Massif Vosgien", Editions du Rhin (Mulhouse), 1994 Mines, mineurs et minéralogie du Silberthal, tomes 1 et 2
  • Occitanie
    • Gard
      • Saint-Laurent-le-Minier
        • Les Malines District
[Sphalerite] J F Carpenter specimen
  • Lower Saxony
    • Harz
      • Clausthal-Zellerfeld
        • Burgstatt veins
[Tiemannite] Weiss: "Mineralfundstellen, Deutschland West", 1990
  • North Rhine-Westphalia
    • Bergisches Land
      • Waldbröl
        • Wirtenbach
[Sphalerite] Lapis 2005(30), 9
  • Co. Longford
    • Ballymahon
      • Keel
[Sphalerite] Barry Flannery (Personal Collection); Singer, D.A., Berger, V.I., and Moring, B.C., (2009), Sediment-hosted zinc-lead deposits of the world; database and grade and tonnage models: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2009-1252
  • Co. Tipperary
    • Silvermines District
[Sphalerite] Barry Flannery Collection; Mineralogical Magazine 1959 32 : 128-139.
[Sphalerite] Barry Flannery Collection; Econ Geol (1987) 82:371-394
[Sphalerite] Moreton, S. (1999) Mineralogical Record, 30, 99-106.
  • Tuscany
    • Lucca Province
      • Apuan Alps
        • Stazzema
[Sphalerite] European Journal of Mineralogy, 12 (2)
[Sphalerite] Dini A., 1995. Metacinabro zincifero (leviglianite) e sfalerite mercurifera della miniera di Levigliani (Alpi Apuane, Toscana). Atti Soc. Tosc. Sci. Nat., Mem., 102: 67-72.
          • Ponte Stazzemese
[Sphalerite] Orlandi P., Dini A., 2004. Die Mineralien der Buca della Vena-Mine, Apuaner Berge, Toskana (Italien). Lapis, 1: 11-24
        • Vergemoli
          • Fornovolasco
[Sphalerite] Cioffi M., 1991. La mineralizzazione a magnetite-pirite di Fornovolasco (Alpi Apuane). Tesi di laurea inedita, Università di Firenze. ; Biagioni, C., Orlandi, P., & Bonini, M. (2008). Fornovolasco. Storia e minerali delle miniere di ferro presso Vergemoli (Alpi Apuane). Rivista Mineralogica Italiana, 4/2008, 230-252
      • Gallicano
[Sphalerite] Biagioni, C., & Barsanti, M. (2008). Primo ritrovamento di millerite nella Valle del Serchio (Lucca). MICRO (notizie mineralogiche), 2008, 111-116.
  • Honshu Island
    • Kinki Region
      • Mie Prefecture
[Metacinnabar] Dr. Kameki Kinoshita collection (curated at Geological Survey of Japan); Yajima, S. (1960). Metacinnabar from Sarawak and Japan, with Reference to Its Stability Relations to Cinnabar. Mineralogical Journal, 3(1), 9-18.
  • Karagandy Province (Qaragandy Oblysy; Karaganda Oblast')
    • Chu-Sarysu basin
      • Dzhezkazgan (Zhezqazghan)
[Sphalerite] RWMW Specimen; Box, S.E., Syusyura, Boris, Hayes, T.S., Taylor, C.D., Zientek, M.L., Hitzman, M.W., Seltmann, Reimer, Chechetkin, Vladimir, Dolgopolova, Alla, Cossette, P.M., and Wallis, J.C., 2012, Sandstone copper assessment of the Chu-Sarysu Basin, Central Kazakhstan: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2010–5090–E, 63 p. ; Evseev, A. A. (1995) Kazaknstan and Middle Asia. A brief Mineralogical Guide. World of Stone 8:24-30
  • District of Kosovska Mitrovica
    • Kosovska Mitrovica
      • Trepča valley
        • Trepča complex
[Sphalerite] Féraud J. (1979) - La mine " Stari-Trg " (Trepca, Yougoslavie) et ses richesses minéralogiques. Avec la collaboration de Mari D. et G. (1979) Minéraux et Fossiles, n° 59-60, p. 19-28; Joana Koà Odziejczyk ,Jaroslav Pršek , Halilqela ( 2012) MIneralogical Diversity In Orebodies Within Xth Horizon.At Stan Terg Mine, Kosovo. Buletini i Shkencave Gjeologjike pp84-
  • Buskerud
    • Kongsberg
[Sphalerite] Neumann, H. (1944): Silver deposits at Kongsberg. Norges Geologiske Undersøkelse 162. p. 57
  • Rogaland
    • Karmøy
[Sphalerite] Torkelsen, Arne (1993): Om gruvene på Karmøy. STEIN 20 (1), 47-52
  • Ancash Department
    • Bolognesi Province
      • Huallanca District
        • Huallanca
[Sphalerite] Hyrsl & Rosales (2003) Mineralogical Record, 34, 241-254.; Econ Geol (1985) 80:416-478
[Sphalerite] Mineralogical Record 28, no. 4 (1997); Hyrsl & Rosales (2003) Mineralogical Record, 34, 241-254.; Hyrsl & Rosales (2003) Mineralogical Record, 34, 241-254.
    • Pallasca Province
      • Pampas District
[Sphalerite] Mineralogical Record 28, No. 4 (1997); Hyršl, J. (2011): Pasto Bueno und Mundo Nuevo in Peru- die weltbesten Hübnerite und mehr. Mineralien Welt 22(1), 64-79
    • Recuay Province
      • Ticapampa District
[Sphalerite] Mi.Rec. 28, no.4 (1997)
  • La Libertad Department
    • Santiago de Chuco Province
      • Quiruvilca District
[Sphalerite] Burkart-Baumann, I.; Ottemann, J. (1972): Low temperature sulfides from Quiruvilca, Peru. Neues Jahrbuch für Mineralogie, Monatshefte 1972, 541-551 (in German).; Min.Rec. 28, #4 (1997)
  • Lubelskie
    • Zamość
[Browneite] Ma, C. (2012) Browneite, IMA 2012-008. CNMNC Newsletter No. 13, June 2012, page 814; Mineralogical Magazine, 76, 807-817.
  • Maramureș Co.
    • Baia Mare (Nagybánya)
      • Chiuzbaia (Kisbánya)
[Sphalerite] Palache et al (1944), Dana's System of Mineralogy, Seventh ed., Vol. 1: 450.; Cook, N. J. & Damian, G. S. (1997): New data on "plumosite" and other sulfosalt minerals from the Herja hydrothermal vein deposit, Baia Mare district, Rumania. Geologica Carpathica 48, 387-399.; Damian, G. (2012). The genesis of the base metal ore deposit from Herja. Studia UBB, Geologia, 48(1), 85-100.
  • Far-Eastern Region
    • Primorskiy Kray
      • Kavalerovo Mining District
        • Dal'negorsk (Dalnegorsk; Tetyukhe; Tjetjuche; Tetjuche)
[Sphalerite] [MinRec 32:9]; Rogulina, L.I., and Sveshnikova, O.L. (2008): Geology of Ore Deposits 50(1), 60-74.; Dobovol'skaya, M. G., Baskina, V. A., Balashova, S. P., Kenisarin, A. M., Arakelyants, M. M., Klimachev, L. A., & Muravitskaya, G. N. (1990). Order of Formation of the Ores and Mafic Dikes of the Nikolayevsk Deposit (Southern Primor'ye). International Geology Review, 32(4), 391-403.
South Africa
  • Gauteng Province
    • Witwatersrand field
      • West Rand District (West Rand)
        • Far West Rand (West Wits Line)
          • Western Sector
            • Carletonville
[Sphalerite] [MinRec 32:177]
  • Catalonia
    • Barcelona
      • Vallès Occidental-Baix Llobregat
        • Sant Cugat del Vallès-El Papiol
[Sphalerite] No reference listed
  • Wallis (Valais)
    • Binn Valley
      • Fäld (Imfeld; Im Feld; Feld)
[Sphalerite] No reference listed
  • England
    • Cumbria
      • Alston Moor District
        • Nent Valley
[Sphalerite] No reference listed
        • Nenthead
[Sphalerite] Dunham K C, Geology of the Northern Pennine Orefield , Vol 1, Tyne to Stainmore. HMSO
    • West Dorset
      • Eype
[Sphalerite] David Baldwin
  • California
    • Napa Co.
      • Knoxville District
        • Knoxville
[Metacinnabar] Durand, F.E. (1873), Notes on the crystallization of metacinnabarite: California Academy of Science Proceedings: 4: 219-220; Hanks, Henry Garber (1884), Fourth report of the State Mineralogist: California Mining Bureau. Report 4, 410 pp.: 261; Ransome, Alfred Leslie & J.L. Kellogg (1939), Quicksilver resources of California: California Journal of Mines and Geology, California Division Mines (Report 35): 35: 410; Murdoch, Joseph & Robert W. Webb (1966), Minerals of California, Centennial Volume (1866-1966): California Division Mines & Geology Bulletin 189: 254-255, 262; Pemberton, H. Earl (1983), Minerals of California; Van Nostrand Reinholt Press: 118.; USBM IC8252; Emmons and Becker (1885) Statistics and Technology of the precious Metals. Census reports Tenth census. June 1, 1880, Volume 13 By United States. Census office. 10th census, 1880, United States. Census Office
  • Colorado
    • Boulder Co.
      • Balarat District
[Coloradoite] "Minerals of Colorado, updated & revised", p. 158, by Eckel, Edwin B., 1997; Dana 7:I:219.
      • Magnolia District
[Coloradoite] "Minerals of Colorado, updated & revised", p. 158, by Eckel, Edwin B., 1997
[Coloradoite] "Minerals of Colorado, updated & revised", p. 158, by Eckel, Edwin B., 1997
  • Connecticut
    • Litchfield Co.
      • Thomaston
        • Thomaston Dam
[Sphalerite] Yedlin, Neal. (1973a), Yedlin on Micromounting. Mineralogical Record: 4(2).; Yedlin, Neal. (1973b), Yedlin on Micromounting. Mineralogical Record: 4(6).; Fluorite: The Collector's Choice. Extra Lapis English No. 9; Segeler, Curt and Molon, Joseph. (1985), The Thomaston Dam Site, Thomaston, Connecticut; Rocks & Minerals: 60(3): 119-124.; Henderson, William A. (1995), Microminerals of Connecticut; Rocks & Minerals: 70: 420-425.; Henderson, William A. (1979), Microminerals. Thomaston Dam. Mineralogical Record: 10: 239-241.; Vogt, Wolfgang. (1991), Rediscovering Thomaston Dam. Lapidary Journal: April.
    • New Haven Co.
      • Southbury
[Sphalerite] J. Zolan; Weber, Marcelle H. and Earle C. Sullivan. (1995): Connecticut Mineral Locality Index. Rocks & Minerals (Connecticut Issue): 70(6): 407; Garabedian, James A. (1998), Secondary Mineralization of Half-Moon Vesicles in the Mesozoic Basalt of the O&G#2 Quarry, Woodbury, Connecticut. University of Connecticut Master of Science Thesis.
  • Maryland
    • Carroll Co.
      • Medford
[Sphalerite] J. Wingard, personal observation 5/1/04
  • Missouri
    • Lewis Co.
[Sphalerite] R&M 73:2 pp 98-117
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