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The way to the type locality of strontianite

Strontian, North West Highlands, Scotland, UK
Often contains minor Ca substituting for Sr.
Colourless, white, gray, light yellow, green, brown; colourless in transmitted light
Vitreous, Resinous
Specific Gravity:
3.74 - 3.78
Crystal System:
Member of:
Named in 1791 by Friedrich Gabriel Sulzer after its discovery locality, Strontian, Scotland.
The Sr analogue of aragonite and witherite. Compare olekminskite and 'UM1989-07-CO:CaSr'.

Strontianite, strontium carbonate, is mainly found as a low-temperature mineral in limestone and also found as a gangue mineral in sulphide veins. It is almost always fluorescent.

Visit for gemological information about Strontianite.

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Classification of StrontianiteHide

Approved, 'Grandfathered' (first described prior to 1959)

A : Carbonates without additional anions, without H2O
B : Alkali-earth (and other M2+) carbonates

1 : A(XO3)

11 : Carbonates
5 : Carbonates of Sr and Ba

Physical Properties of StrontianiteHide

Vitreous, Resinous
Transparent, Translucent
Colourless, white, gray, light yellow, green, brown; colourless in transmitted light
3½ on Mohs scale
Very Good
On {110} nearly perfect; on {021} poor; on {010} in traces.
None noted.
Irregular/Uneven, Sub-Conchoidal
3.74 - 3.78 g/cm3 (Measured)    3.722 g/cm3 (Calculated)

Optical Data of StrontianiteHide

Biaxial (-)
RI values:
nα = 1.516 - 1.520 nβ = 1.663 - 1.667 nγ = 1.667 - 1.668
Measured: 7° , Calculated: 12° to 8°
Max Birefringence:
δ = 0.151
Image shows birefringence interference colour range (at 30µm thickness)
and does not take into account mineral colouration.
Surface Relief:
Optical Extinction:

Chemical Properties of StrontianiteHide


Often contains minor Ca substituting for Sr.
Common Impurities:

Crystallography of StrontianiteHide

Crystal System:
Class (H-M):
mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m) - Dipyramidal
Cell Parameters:
a = 5.1059(7) Å, b = 8.4207(13) Å, c = 6.0319(11) Å
a:b:c = 0.606 : 1 : 0.716
Unit Cell V:
259.34 ų (Calculated from Unit Cell)
Crystals short to long prismatic [001], often acicular. Often pseudohexagonal in aspect due to equal development of {110} and {010} or of {hhl} and {0.2h.l}. {110} and {010} are striated horizontally, the steep {hhl} and {0kl} forms are rounded at times. Massive, columnar to fibrous; granular; rounded masses.
Very common. Twin plane {110}, usually as contact twins, rarely as penetration twins; also repeated, as trillings, fourlings, or polysynthetic, yielding enclosed twin lamellae.
Non-standard space group setting (Pmcn).

Crystallographic forms of StrontianiteHide

Crystal Atlas:
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Strontianite no.7 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Strontianite no.13 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
3d models and HTML5 code kindly provided by

Edge Lines | Miller Indicies | Axes

Opaque | Translucent | Transparent

Along a-axis | Along b-axis | Along c-axis | Start rotation | Stop rotation

X-Ray Powder DiffractionHide

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Radiation - Copper Kα
Data Set:
Data courtesy of RRUFF project at University of Arizona, used with permission.
Powder Diffraction Data:
4.367 (14)
4.207 (6)
3.535 (100)
3.450 (70)
3.014 (22)
2.859 (5)
2.838 (20)
2.596 (12)
2.554 (23)
2.481 (34)
2.458 (40)
2.4511 (33)
2.2646 (5)
2.1831 (16)
2.1035 (7)
2.0526 (50)
1.9860 (26)
1.9489 (21)
1.9053 (35)
1.8514 (3)
1.8253 (31)
1.8134 (16)
1.8023 (4)
1.7685 (7)
1.7253 (5)
1.6684 (3)
1.6236 (4)
1.6080 (13)
1.5981 (3)
1.5676 (13)
1.5447 (11)
1.5072 (3)
1.4782 (6)
1.4596 (4)
1.4551 (9)
1.4293 (6)
1.4246 (7)
1.4120 (5)
1.4024 (4)
1.3100 (10)
ICDD 5-418 (synthetic)

Type Occurrence of StrontianiteHide

Geological Setting of Type Material:
In veins in gneiss.

Synonyms of StrontianiteHide

Other Language Names for StrontianiteHide

Varieties of StrontianiteHide

EmmoniteA calcian (calcium-bearing) strontianite. This variety is not uncommon - strontianite very often contains minor calcium.

Originally reported from Großkogel Mt., St Gertraudi, Brixlegg - Rattenberg, Brixlegg - Schwaz area, Inn valley, North Tyrol, Tyro...

Relationship of Strontianite to other SpeciesHide

Member of:
Other Members of this group:
AragoniteCaCO3Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m)
CerussitePbCO3Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m)
WitheriteBaCO3Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m)
Forms a series with:

Common AssociatesHide

Associated Minerals Based on Photo Data:
Calcite199 photos of Strontianite associated with Calcite on
Celestine82 photos of Strontianite associated with Celestine on
Baryte58 photos of Strontianite associated with Baryte on
Fluorite56 photos of Strontianite associated with Fluorite on
Dolomite47 photos of Strontianite associated with Dolomite on
Pyrite29 photos of Strontianite associated with Pyrite on
Quartz22 photos of Strontianite associated with Quartz on
Chalcopyrite20 photos of Strontianite associated with Chalcopyrite on
Analcime10 photos of Strontianite associated with Analcime on
Sphalerite10 photos of Strontianite associated with Sphalerite on

Related Minerals - Nickel-Strunz GroupingHide

5.AB.05CalciteCaCO3Trig. 3m (3 2/m) : R3c
5.AB.05MagnesiteMgCO3Trig. 3m (3 2/m) : R3c
5.AB.05OtaviteCdCO3Trig. 3m (3 2/m)
5.AB.05RhodochrositeMnCO3Trig. 3m (3 2/m) : R3c
5.AB.05SideriteFeCO3Trig. 3m (3 2/m) : R3c
5.AB.05SmithsoniteZnCO3Trig. 3m (3 2/m) : R3c
5.AB.05SpherocobaltiteCoCO3Trig. 3m (3 2/m) : R3c
5.AB.10AnkeriteCa(Fe2+,Mg)(CO3)2Trig. 3 : R3
5.AB.10DolomiteCaMg(CO3)2Trig. 3 : R3
5.AB.10KutnohoriteCa(Mn,Mg,Fe)(CO3)2Trig. 3 : R3
5.AB.10MinrecorditeCaZn(CO3)2Trig. 3 : R3
5.AB.15AragoniteCaCO3Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m)
5.AB.15CerussitePbCO3Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m)
5.AB.15WitheriteBaCO3Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m)
5.AB.20VateriteCaCO3Hex. 6/mmm (6/m 2/m 2/m) : P63/mmc
5.AB.25HuntiteCaMg3(CO3)4Trig. 3 2 : R3 2
5.AB.30NorsethiteBaMg(CO3)2Trig. 3 2 : R3 2
5.AB.45BarytocalciteBaCa(CO3)2Mon. 2/m : P21/m
5.AB.50Carbocernaite(Ca,Na)(Sr,Ce,Ba)(CO3)2Orth. mm2
5.AB.55BenstoniteBa6Ca6Mg(CO3)13Trig. 3 : R3
5.AB.60JuangodoyiteNa2Cu(CO3)2Mon. 2/m : P21/b

Related Minerals - Dana Grouping (8th Ed.)Hide mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m) mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m)

Related Minerals - Hey's Chemical Index of Minerals GroupingHide

11.5.2WitheriteBaCO3Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m)
11.5.3NorsethiteBaMg(CO3)2Trig. 3 2 : R3 2
11.5.6BarytocalciteBaCa(CO3)2Mon. 2/m : P21/m
11.5.7BenstoniteBa6Ca6Mg(CO3)13Trig. 3 : R3

Fluorescence of StrontianiteHide

Fluorescent and phosphorescent in UV, X-rays, and electron beams.

Other InformationHide

Thermal Behaviour:
Inverts to a hexagonal modification upon heating.

Thermoluminescent at times.
Soluble in dilute HCl.
Alters to celestine and found as an alteration of celestine.
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 StrontianiteHide

Reference List:
Sort by Year (asc) | by Year (desc) | by Author (A-Z) | by Author (Z-A)
Sulzer (1791) Lichtenberg's Magazine: 7, 3, 68.
Sulzer (1791) Bergmännisches Journal, Freiberg (Neues Bergmännisches Journal): 1: 5, 433.
Macadam (1885) Mineralogical Magazine: 6: 173.
CAthrein (1888) Zeitschrift für Kristallographie, Mineralogie und Petrographie, Leipzig: 14: 366.
Buchrucker (1891) Zeitschrift für Kristallographie, Mineralogie und Petrographie, Leipzig: 19: 146.
Dana, E.S. (1892) System of Mineralogy, 6th. Edition, New York: 285.
Jackson (1894) Journal of the Chemical Society, London: 65: 734.
Mallard (1895) Bulletin de la Société française de Minéralogie: 18: 12.
Zirngibl (1897) Zeitschrift für Kristallographie, Mineralogie und Petrographie, Leipzig: 27: 543.
Bary (1900) Comptes rendus de l’Académie des sciences de Paris: 130: 776.
Beykirch (1900) Neues Jahrbuch für Mineralogie, Geologie und Paleontologie, Beil.-Bd., Heidelberg, Stuttgart: 13: 427.
Kunz and Baskerville (1903) Science: 769.
Doelter, C. (1911) Handbuch der Mineral-chemie (in 4 volumes divided into parts): 1: 481.
Boeke (1913) Mitt. naturfor. Ges. Halle: 3: 10.
Goldschmidt, V. (1922) Atlas der Krystallformen. 9 volumes, atlas, and text, vol. 8: 91.
Hintze, Carl (1926) Handbuch der Mineralogie. Berlin and Leipzig. 6 volumes: 1[3A]: 3034.
Szebellédy (1926) Inaugural Dissertation, Budapest [Min. Abs.: 3: 261 (1927)].
Wilson (1928) Physical Review, a Journal of Experimental and Theoretical Physics: 31: 305.
Cork and Gerhard (1931) American Mineralogist: 16: 71.
Köhler and Leitmeier (1934) Zeitschrift für Kristallographie, Mineralogie und Petrographie, Leipzig: 87: 146.
Krejci-Graf (1934) Zeitschrift für Kristallographie, Mineralogie und Petrographie, Leipzig: 88: 260.
Palache, C., Berman, H., & Frondel, C. (1951), The System of Mineralogy of James Dwight Dana and Edward Salisbury Dana, Yale University 1837-1892, Volume II: Halides, Nitrates, Borates, Carbonates, Sulfates, Phosphates, Arsenates, Tungstates, Molybdates, Etc. John Wiley and Sons, Inc., New York, 7th edition, revised and enlarged: 196-200.
American Mineralogist (1971): 56: 758-772.
American Mineralogist (1976): 61: 1001.
Reviews in Mineralogy, Mineralogical Society of America: 11.
Bulletin de la Société française de Minéralogie et de Cristallographie (1988): 111: 139.
Sanchez-Pastor, N. et al. (2011): Raman study of synthetic witherite-strontianite solid solutions. Spectroscopy Letters 44(7-8), 500-504.

Internet Links for StrontianiteHide

Localities for StrontianiteHide

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 ListShow

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