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About AthabascaiteHide

Lake Athabasca, Canada
Light grey, bluish-grey to white
Specific Gravity:
6.59 (Calculated)
Crystal System:
Named for Lake Athabasca, which crosses the border between Saskatchewan and Alberta, Canada. The type locality is near the lake.
This page provides mineralogical data about Athabascaite.

Classification of AthabascaiteHide

Approval Year:
First Published:
Approval History:

2 : SULFIDES and SULFOSALTS (sulfides, selenides, tellurides; arsenides, antimonides, bismuthides; sulfarsenites, sulfantimonites, sulfbismuthites, etc.)
B : Metal Sulfides, M: S > 1: 1 (mainly 2: 1)
A : With Cu, Ag, Au

16 : Miscellaneous

3 : Sulphides, Selenides, Tellurides, Arsenides and Bismuthides (except the arsenides, antimonides and bismuthides of Cu, Ag and Au, which are included in Section 1)
1 : Sulphides etc. of Cu

Physical Properties of AthabascaiteHide

Light grey, bluish-grey to white
2½ on Mohs scale
VHN15=78 kg/mm2 - Vickers
6.59 g/cm3 (Calculated)

Optical Data of AthabascaiteHide

Strong, creamy white to dark blue
400nmR1=21.2%R2= 25.1%
420nmR1=19.9%R2= 25.2%
440nmR1=19.6%R2= 25.3%
460nmR1=19.3%R2= 25.4%
480nmR1=19.0%R2= 25.5%
500nmR1=18.6%R2= 25.6%
520nmR1=18.3%R2= 25.6%
540nmR1=17.8%R2= 25.5%
560nmR1=17.4%R2= 25.4%
580nmR1=16.9%R2= 25.1%
600nmR1=16.3%R2= 25.0%
620nmR1=15.5%R2= 24.5%
640nmR1=15.0%R2= 24.2%
660nmR1=14.2%R2= 23.7%
680nmR1=13.4%R2= 23.1%
700nmR1=12.5%R2= 22.4%

Reflectance graph
Graph shows reflectance levels at different wavelengths (in nm). Top of box is 100%. Peak reflectance is 25.6%.
R1 shown in black, R2 shown in red
Light gray to blue-gray

Chemical Properties of AthabascaiteHide

Common Impurities:

Crystallography of AthabascaiteHide

Crystal System:
Cell Parameters:
a = 8.227 Å, b = 11.982 Å, c = 6.441 Å
a:b:c = 0.687 : 1 : 0.538
Unit Cell V:
634.93 ų (Calculated from Unit Cell)
laths to 100 microns

X-Ray Powder DiffractionHide

Powder Diffraction Data:
3.44 Å(30)
3.235 Å(100)
3.015 Å(60)
1.997 Å(80)
1.893 Å(50)
1.817 Å(30)
1.664 Å(40)
Martin Lake mine, Canada.

Geological EnvironmentHide

Geological Setting:
In basaltic rocks

Type Occurrence of AthabascaiteHide

Place of Conservation of Type Material:
National Museum of Canada, Ottawa; Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, Canada, M29432.
Geological Setting of Type Material:
As inclusions in and replacements of umangite, as stringers and veinlets in carbonate veins cutting basalt.
Associated Minerals at Type Locality:
Harris, D.C., Cabri, L.J., Kaiman, S. (1970) Athabascaite, a new copper selenide mineral from Martin Lake, Saskatchewan. Canadian Mineralogist: 10: 207-215.

Synonyms of AthabascaiteHide

Other Language Names for AthabascaiteHide

Simplified Chinese:斜方硒铜矿
Traditional Chinese:斜方硒銅礦

Common AssociatesHide

Associated Minerals Based on Photo Data:
2 photos of Athabascaite associated with TyrrelliteCu(Co3+,Ni3+)2Se4
1 photo of Athabascaite associated with UmangiteCu3Se2
1 photo of Athabascaite associated with CalciteCaCO3
1 photo of Athabascaite associated with BerzelianiteCu2Se

Related Minerals - Nickel-Strunz GroupingHide

2.BA.DzierżanowskiteCaCu2S2Trig. 3m (3 2/m) : P3m1
2.BA.05ChalcociteCu2SMon. 2/m : P21/b
2.BA.05DjurleiteCu31S16Mon. 2/m
2.BA.05GeeriteCu8S5Trig. 3
2.BA.05RoxbyiteCu9S5Tric. 1 : P1
2.BA.10AniliteCu7S4Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m) : Pnma
2.BA.10DigeniteCu9S5Trig. 3m (3 2/m) : R3m
2.BA.15BorniteCu5FeS4Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m) : Pbca
2.BA.20BellidoiteCu2SeTet. 4/m : P42/n
2.BA.20BerzelianiteCu2SeIso. m3m (4/m 3 2/m) : Fm3m
2.BA.35AcanthiteAg2SMon. 2/m : P21/m
2.BA.40MckinstryiteAg5-xCu3+xS4Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m) : Pnma
2.BA.40StromeyeriteAgCuSOrth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m)
2.BA.45SelenojalpaiteAg3CuSe2Tet. 4/mmm (4/m 2/m 2/m) : I41/amd
2.BA.55AguilariteAg4SeSMon. 2/m
2.BA.55NaumanniteAg2SeOrth. 2 2 2 : P21 21 21
2.BA.60CervelleiteAg4TeSMon. 2/m
2.BA.60HessiteAg2TeMon. 2/m : P21/b
2.BA.65Henryite(Cu,Ag)3+xTe2 , with x ~ 0.40 Iso. m3m (4/m 3 2/m) : Fd3c
2.BA.65StütziteAg5-xTe3, x = 0.24-0.36Hex. 6 : P6
2.BA.70ArgyroditeAg8GeS6Orth. mm2 : Pna21
2.BA.70CanfielditeAg8SnS6Orth. mm2
2.BA.70Putzite(Cu4.7Ag3.3)GeS6Iso. 4 3m : F4 3m
2.BA.75FischesseriteAg3AuSe2Iso. 4 3 2 : I41 3 2
2.BA.75PetziteAg3AuTe2Iso. 4 3 2 : I41 3 2
2.BA.75UytenbogaardtiteAg3AuS2Trig. 3m (3 2/m) : R3c

Related Minerals - Hey's Chemical Index of Minerals GroupingHide

3.1.1ChalcociteCu2SMon. 2/m : P21/b
3.1.2DjurleiteCu31S16Mon. 2/m
3.1.3DigeniteCu9S5Trig. 3m (3 2/m) : R3m
3.1.4AniliteCu7S4Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m) : Pnma
3.1.5RoxbyiteCu9S5Tric. 1 : P1
3.1.7GeeriteCu8S5Trig. 3
3.1.8CovelliteCuSHex. 6/mmm (6/m 2/m 2/m) : P63/mmc
3.1.9BerzelianiteCu2SeIso. m3m (4/m 3 2/m) : Fm3m
3.1.10BellidoiteCu2SeTet. 4/m : P42/n
3.1.14KlockmanniteCuSeHex. 6/mmm (6/m 2/m 2/m) : P63/mmc
3.1.15Krut'aiteCuSe2Iso. m3 (2/m 3) : Pa3
3.1.20LautiteCuAsSOrth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m) : Pnma
3.1.21MgriiteCu3AsSe3Iso. m3m (4/m 3 2/m)
3.1.22CubaniteCuFe2S3Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m)
3.1.23BorniteCu5FeS4Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m) : Pbca
3.1.24FukuchiliteCu3FeS8Iso. m3 (2/m 3) : Pa3
3.1.25ChalcopyriteCuFeS2Tet. 4 2m : I4 2d
3.1.27HaycockiteCu4Fe5S8Orth. 2 2 2
3.1.28IsocubaniteCuFe2S3Iso. m3m (4/m 3 2/m) : Fm3m
3.1.30NukundamiteCu3.33Fe0.66S4Trig. 3m (3 2/m) : P3m1
3.1.32Orickite2CuFeS2 · H2OHex.
3.1.35TalnakhiteCu9(Fe,Ni)8S16Iso. 4 3m : I4 3m

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 AthabascaiteHide

Reference List:
Sort by Year (asc) | by Year (desc) | by Author (A-Z) | by Author (Z-A)
Harris, D.C., Cabri, L.J., Kaiman, S. (1969) A new copper selenide from Martin Lake, Saskatchewan. Canadian Mineralogist: 10: 135-136 (abstr.).
Harris, D.C., Cabri, L.J., Kaiman, S. (1970) Athabascaite, a new copper selenide mineral from Martin Lake, Saskatchewan. Canadian Mineralogist: 10: 207-215.
Fleischer, M. (1971) New mineral names. American Mineralogist: 56: 631-640.

Internet Links for AthabascaiteHide

Localities for AthabascaiteHide

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.
  • La Rioja Province
    • General Lamadrid department
      • Villa Castelli
Excalibur Mineral specimen
Handbook of Mineralogy
  • Potosí
    • Antonio Quijarro Province
Grundmann, G. and Förster H.-J. (2017) Origin of the El Dragón Selenium Mineralization, Quijarro Province, Potosi, Bolivia. Minerals, 7, 68;; Grundmann, G. and Förster H.-J. (2017) Origin of the El Dragón Selenium Mineralization, Quijarro Province, Potosí, Bolivia. Minerals, 7(5), 68; doi:10.3390/min7050068
  • Nunavut
    • Kivalliq Region
      • Baker Lake
Miller A. (1980) Uranium Geology of the Eastern Baker Lake Basin, District of Keewatin, Northwest Territories; G.S.C. Bulletin 330.
  • Saskatchewan
    • Beaverlodge Lake area
HARRIS, D.C., CABRI, L.J. & KAIMAN, S. (1969): A new copper selenide from Martin Lake, Saskatchewan. Canadian Mineralogist 10, 135 136 (abstr.). HARRIS, D.C., CABRI, L.J. & KAIMAN, S. (1970): Athabascaite, a new copper selenide mineral from Martin Lake, Saskatchewan. Canadian Mineralogist 10, 207-215. Econ Geol (1997) 92:468-484
  • Inner Mongolia
    • Alxa League (Alashan Prefecture)
      • Alxa Right Banner (Alashan Youqi)
Jiayong Pan, Chengdong Liu, Guolin Guo, Anping Chen, Fazheng Chen, Zhaobin Yan, Yiping Chen, and Rengui Wu (2009): Acta Mineralogica Sinica 29(1), 44-48
Czech Republic
  • Central Bohemian Region
Škácha, P., Sejkora, J., & Plášil, J. (2017). Selenide mineralization in the Příbram uranium and base-metal district (Czech Republic). Minerals, 7(6), 91.
  • Olomouc Region
    • Jeseník District
      • Javorník
Sejkora, J., Plášil, J., Litochleb, J., Škácha, P., Pavlícek, R. (2012): A selenide association with macroscopic umangite from the abandoned uranium deposit Zálesí, Rychlebské hory Mountains (Czech Republic). Bulletin mineralogicko-petrologického oddělení Národního muzea v Praze, 20, 187-196 (in Czech with English abstract).
  • Plzeň Region
    • Plzeň-South District
      • Spálené Poříčí
Scharm, B. & Scharmová, M. (2000) Accessory minerals of siliceous rocks from the Kokšín hill near Mítov (Barrandian Neoproterozoic). Bulletin of Geosciences, 75(3), 307-318.
    • Tachov District
      • Planá u Mariánských Lázní
Scharmová, M., Scharm, B.: Minerály selenu na uranovém ložisku Zadní Chodov. Bulletin mineralogicko-petrografického oddělení Národního muzea v Praze, 1995, roč. 3, s. 43-47.
  • South Bohemian Region
    • Písek District
      • Kovářov
        • Předbořice
Anthony, Bideaux, Bladh, Nichols: "Handbook of Mineralogy", Vol. 1, 1990; Bindi, L., Förster, H. J., Grundmann, G., Keutsch, F., & Stanley, C. (2016). Petříčekite, CuSe2, a New Member of the Marcasite Group from the Předbořice Deposit, Central Bohemia Region, Czech Republic. Minerals, 6(2), 33.
  • Vysočina Region
    • Žďár nad Sázavou District
      • Nové Město na Moravě
Anthony, Bideaux, Bladh, Nichols: "Handbook of Mineralogy", Vol. 1, 1990; Econ Geol (1997) 92:468-484
      • Rožná
        • Rožná deposit
In the collection of Brent Thorne. Obtained from
DR Congo
  • Lualaba
    • Kolwezi mining district
      • Kolwezi
Canadian Mineralogist 46,19-31(2008); Wilson, W. E. (2018) The Musonoi mine, Kolwezi District, Lualaba Province, Democratic Republic of the Congo. Mineralogical Record 49:236-304
  • Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes
    • Puy-de-Dôme
      • Issoire
        • Le Vernet-Chaméane
Anthony, Bideaux, Bladh, Nichols: "Handbook of Mineralogy", Vol. 1, 1990; Econ Geol (1997) 92:468-484
  • Lower Saxony
    • Göttingen District
      • Walkenried
        • Zorge
Econ Geol (1997) 92:468-484
  • Saxony-Anhalt
    • Mansfeld-Südharz
      • Mansfeld
Wittern: "Mineralfundorte in Deutschland", 2001
  • Östergötland County
    • Valdemarsvik
Sandström, F. (2007): Skrikerum. Litiofilen 24 (1), 22-38; Jonsson, E., Högdahl, K., Majka, J. & Murashko, M. (2014): Te-Cu-rich sudburyite – the first platinum-group-element mineral from the selenide mineralisation at Skrikerum, Sweden. Neues Jahrbuch für Mineralogie - Abhandlungen. 191, 137-144
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