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About SurinamiteHide

Flag of Surinam
Crystal System:
Named after Surinam where the mineral was discovered in the Bakhuis Mountains.
An unassigned member of the Sapphirine Supergroup (Grew et al. 2008, Mills et al. 2009).

Only the 1M-polytype is known in nature. A Be-free analogue is known as 'UM1988-26-SiO:AlMg'.

Classification of SurinamiteHide

Approval Year:
First Published:

9 : SILICATES (Germanates)
D : Inosilicates
H : Inosilicates with 4-periodic single chains, Si4O12

69 : INOSILICATES Chains with Side Branches or Loops
2 : Chains with Side Branches or Loops with P>2

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

Physical Properties of SurinamiteHide


Optical Data of SurinamiteHide

Biaxial (-)
RI values:
nα = 1.738 nβ = 1.743 nγ = 1.746
Measured: 67° to 68°, Calculated: 74°
Max Birefringence:
δ = 0.008
Image shows birefringence interference colour range (at 30µm thickness)
and does not take into account mineral colouration.
Surface Relief:
r > v moderate

Chemical Properties of SurinamiteHide

IMA Formula:
Common Impurities:

Crystallography of SurinamiteHide

Crystal System:
Class (H-M)
Space Group:
Space Group Setting:
Cell Parameters:
Unit Cell Volume (calc):


Type Occurrence of SurinamiteHide

Place of Conservation of Type Material:
Geological and Mining Service, Paramaribo, Surinam, EW1115.
Associated Minerals at Type Locality:

Synonyms of SurinamiteHide

Other Language Names for SurinamiteHide

Relationship of Surinamite to other SpeciesHide

Other Members of this group:
Aenigmatite GroupA subgroup of the Sapphirine Supergroup.
BeckettiteCa2V6Al6O20Tric. 1 : P1
KhesiniteCa4(Mg3Fe3+9)O4(Fe3+9Si3)O36Tric. 1 : P1
Rhönite GroupSubgroup of the Sapphirine Supergroup.
Sapphirine GroupSubgroup of the Sapphirine Supergroup.

Common AssociatesHide

Associated Minerals Based on Photo Data:
Khmaralite2 photos of Surinamite associated with Khmaralite on mindat.org.
Sillimanite1 photo of Surinamite associated with Sillimanite on mindat.org.
Kyanite1 photo of Surinamite associated with Kyanite on mindat.org.
Quartz1 photo of Surinamite associated with Quartz on mindat.org.

Related Minerals - Nickel-Strunz GroupingHide

9.DH.05LeucophaniteNaCaBeSi2O6FOrth. 2 2 2 : P21 21 21
9.DH.10OhmiliteSr3(Ti,Fe3+)(Si4O12)(O,OH) · 2-3H2OMon.
9.DH.30KrauskopfiteBaSi2O5 · 3H2OMon.
9.DH.35GageiteMn21(Si4O12)2O3(OH)20Mon. 2/m
9.DH.40AenigmatiteNa2Fe2+5Ti(Si6O18)O2Tric. 1 : P1
9.DH.40HøgtuvaiteCa4[Fe2+6Fe3+6]O4[Si8Be2Al2O36]Tric. 1 : P1
9.DH.40Makarochkinite(Ca,Na)2Fe2+4Fe3+Ti[O2|BeAlSi4O18]Tric. 1 : P1
9.DH.40RhöniteCa2(Mg,Fe2+,Fe3+,Ti)6[O2|(Si,Al)6O18]Tric. 1 : P1
9.DH.40SerendibiteCa4[Mg6Al6]O4[Si6B3Al3O36]Tric. 1 : P1
9.DH.40WelshiteCa4Mg9Sb3O4[Si6Be3AlFe2O36]Tric. 1 : P1
9.DH.40WilkinsoniteNa2Fe2+4Fe3+2(Si6O18)O2Tric. 1 : P1
9.DH.45SapphirineMg4(Mg3Al9)O4[Si3Al9O36]Mon. 2/m : P21/b
9.DH.50Khmaralite(Mg,Al,Fe)16[(Al,Si,Be)12O36]O4Mon. 2/m : P21/b

Related Minerals - Dana Grouping (8th Ed.)Hide

69.2.1b.1SapphirineMg4(Mg3Al9)O4[Si3Al9O36]Mon. 2/m : P21/b

Related Minerals - Hey's Chemical Index of Minerals GroupingHide

16.6.1BerylBe3Al2(Si6O18)Hex. 6/mmm (6/m 2/m 2/m) : P6/mcc
16.6.2EuclaseBeAl(SiO4)(OH)Mon. 2/m : P21/b
16.6.3BaveniteCa4Be2Al2Si9O26(OH)2Orth. mm2
16.6.5MilariteK2Ca4Al2Be4Si24O60 · H2OHex. 6/mmm (6/m 2/m 2/m) : P6/mcc
16.6.6LovdariteK2Na6Be4Si14O36 · 9H2OOrth. mm2

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.

References for SurinamiteHide

Reference List:
Sort by Year (asc) | by Year (desc) | by Author (A-Z) | by Author (Z-A)
De Roever, E.W.F., Kieft, C., Murray, E., Klein, E., Drucker, W.H., and Moore, P.B. (1976) Surinamite, a new Mg-Al silicate from the Bakhuis Mountains, western Surinam I. Description, occurrence, and conditions of formation II. X-ray crystallography and proposed crystal structure. American Mineralogist: 61: 193-199.
De Roever, E.M.F., Lattard, D., and Schreyer, W. (1981) Surinamite: a beryllium-bearing mineral. Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology: 76: 472-473.
Fleischer, M., Burns, R.G., Cabri, L.J., Francis, C.A., and Pabst, A. (1982) New mineral names. American Mineralogist: 67: 413-418.
Moore, P.B. and Araki, T. (1983) Surinamite, ca. Mg3Al4Si3BeO16: its crystal structure and relation to sapphirine, ca. Mg2.8Al7.2Si1.2O16. American Mineralogist: 68: 804-810.
Burt, D.M. (1994) Vector representation of some mineral compositions in the aenigmatite group, with special reference to hogtuvaite. The Canadian Mineralogist: 32: 449-457.
Jensen, B.B. (1996) Solid solution among members of the aenigmatite group. Mineralogical Magazine: 60: 982-986.
Kunzmann, T. (1999) The aenigmatite-rhönite mineral group. European Journal of Mineralogy: 11: 743-756.
Baba, S., Grew, E.S., Shearer, C.K., and Sheraton, J.W. (2000) Surinamite: a high-temperature metamorphic beryllosilicate from Lewisian sapphirine-bearing kyanite-orthopyroxene-quartz-potassium feldspar gneiss at South Harris, N.W. Scotland. American Mineralogist: 85: 1474-1484.
Barbier, J., Grew, E.S., Hålenius E., Hålenius, U., and Yates, M.G. (2002) The role of Fe and cation order in the crystal chemistry of surinamite, (Mg,Fe 2+)3(Al,Fe 3+)3O[AlBeSi3O15]L: A crystal structure, Mössbauer spectroscopic, and optical spectroscopic study. American Mineralogist: 87: 501-513.
Grew, E.S., Hålenius, U., Pasero, M., and Barbier, J. (2008) Recommended nomenclature for the sapphirine and surinamite groups (sapphirine supergroup). Mineralogical Magazine: 72: 839-876.
Mills, S.J., Hatert, F., Nickel, E.H., and Ferraris, G. (2009) The standardisation of mineral group hierarchies: application to recent nomenclature proposals. European Journal of Mineralogy: 21: 1073-1080.

Internet Links for SurinamiteHide

Localities for SurinamiteHide

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.
  • Eastern Antarctica
    • Enderby Land
        • Casey Bay
          • Khmara Bay
Edward S. Grew Surinamite, taafeite and beryllian saphirine from pegmatites in graulite-facies rocks of Casey Bay, Enderby Land, Antarctica, - Am. Miner., 1981,v.66, p.1022-1033.
Grew, E. S. (1981): Surinamite, taaffeite and beryllian sapphirine from pegmatites in granulite-facies rocks of Casey Bay, Enderby Land, Antarctica. American Mineralogist, 66, 1022-1033
  • Northern Territory
    • Central Desert Region
Neues Jahrb Mineral Monatsh1:15-35. (1976)
Suriname (TL)
  • Sipaliwini District
De Roever, E.W.F., Kieft, C., Murray, E., Klein, E., Drucker, W.H., and Moore, P.B. (1976) Surinamite, a new Mg-Al silicate from the Bakhuis Mountains, western Surinam. I. Description, occurrence, and conditions of formation II. X-ray crystallography and proposed crystal structure. American Mineralogist: 61: 193-199.
  • Scotland
    • Outer Hebrides (Na h-Eileanan Siar)
      • Isle of Lewis and Harris
        • Harris
AmMin 85: 1474-1484
  • Eastern Province
    • Chipata District
American Mineralogist, Volume 70, pages 710-713, 1985
Mineral and/or Locality  
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