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Nüwa (女媧)
Specific Gravity:
7.24 (Calculated)
Crystal System:
The name nuwaite is after Nu Wa, the goddess in the ancient Chinese mythology who patched the fractured wall of Heaven to save the early World after Pan Gu’s creation, in allusion to this secondary mineral filling cracks in a primitive refractory inclusion in the early solar system.
The Ge analogue of butianite. Unique combination of elements among the approved natural species, although an unnamed phase 'UM1959-03-S:CuGeNi' with similar composition is known.

Alteration phase in a Ca-Al-rich inclusion (CAI) in Allende chondrite. Possibly the first solar mineral rich in Ge, Sn and Te.

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Classification of NuwaiteHide

Approval Year:
First Published:
Approval History:
IMA 2013-018

Physical Properties of NuwaiteHide

7.24 g/cm3 (Calculated)

Chemical Properties of NuwaiteHide


Common Impurities:

Crystallography of NuwaiteHide

Crystal System:
Class (H-M):
4/mmm (4/m 2/m 2/m) - Ditetragonal Dipyramidal
Space Group:
Cell Parameters:
a = 3.650 Å, c = 18.141 A ˚ Å
a:c = 1 : 4.97
Unit Cell V:
241.7 ų

X-Ray Powder DiffractionHide

Powder Diffraction Data:
From Type Description.

Type Occurrence of NuwaiteHide

General Appearance of Type Material:
irregular grains 1-6 μm in size
Place of Conservation of Type Material:
Type material is deposited in the collections of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History, Washington DC, USA, registration number USNM 7616
Empirical Formula of Type Material:
Chemical Analysis of Type Material:
Ni65.3 %
S10.3 %
Ge8.2 %
Te7.9 %
Sn5.1 %
Fe1.7 %
Total:98.5 %
Geological Setting of Type Material:
Nuwaite is apparently a late-stage alteration product in meteorites.
Ma, C. and Beckett, J.R. (2018) Nuwaite (Ni6GeS2) and butianite (Ni6SnS2), two new minerals from the Allende meteorite: Alteration products in the early solar system. American Mineralogist: 103: 1918–1924.

Synonyms of NuwaiteHide

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 NuwaiteHide

Reference List:
Sort by Year (asc) | by Year (desc) | by Author (A-Z) | by Author (Z-A)
Ma, C. (2013) Nuwaite, IMA 2013-018. CNMNC Newsletter No. 16, August 2013, page 2704. Mineralogical Magazine: 77: 2695-2709.
Ma, C. (2015) Discovery of nuwaite, Ni6GeS2, a new alteration mineral in Allende. 78th Annual Meeting of the Meteoritical Society, pdf no. 5151.
Ma, C. and Beckett, J.R. (2018) Nuwaite (Ni6GeS2) and butianite (Ni6SnS2), two new minerals from the Allende meteorite: Alteration products in the early solar system. American Mineralogist: 103: 1918–1924.

Internet Links for NuwaiteHide

Localities for NuwaiteHide

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.
Mexico (TL)
  • Chihuahua
    • Pueblito de Allende
Ma, C. (2016): Butianite, IMA 2016-028. CNMNC Newsletter No. 32, August 2016, page 920; Mineralogical Magazine: 80: 915–922
Mineral and/or Locality  
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