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Wetherillite

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About WetherilliteHide

Formula:
Na2Mg(UO2)2(SO4)4·18H2O
Colour:
Pale greenish-yellow
Lustre:
Vitreous
Hardness:
2
Specific Gravity:
2.626 (Calculated)
Crystal System:
Monoclinic
Name:
Named for John Wetherill (1866–1944) and George W. Wetherill (1925–2006).
New structure type. Unique combination of elements among approved mineral species (compare 'UM1976-06-BO:HMgNaSU' and 'UM1976-06-BO:HMgNaSU'); stoichiometry and hydration level somewhat similar to those in the closely associated bobcookite.

In the structure there are (1) (UO2)(SO4)2(H2O) sheets || {100} (chains of identical composition are found in bobcookite) and (2) NaO5(H2O) polyhedra chains; the latter link the adjacent U-bearing sheets to form a weakly bonded 3-layer sandwich. Hydrogen bonds involving insular Mg(H2O)6 octahedra and isolated water groups link the sandwich layers. Composition of the coordination sphere in Na polyhedra in bobcookite is different.


Classification of WetherilliteHide

Approved
Approval Year:
2014

Physical Properties of WetherilliteHide

Vitreous
Transparency:
Transparent
Colour:
Pale greenish-yellow
Streak:
White
Hardness:
Comment:
ca. 2
Tenacity:
Brittle
Cleavage:
Perfect
Two cleavages, {101İ} perfect and {010} fair
Fracture:
Conchoidal
Comment:
fracture may also be curved
Density:
2.626 g/cm3 (Calculated)
Comment:
couldn't be measured

Chemical Properties of WetherilliteHide

Formula:
Na2Mg(UO2)2(SO4)4·18H2O
IMA Formula:
Na2Mg(UO2)2(SO4)4 · 18H2O
Common Impurities:
Zn,Cu,Fe

Crystallography of WetherilliteHide

Crystal System:
Monoclinic
Class (H-M):
2/m - Prismatic
Space Group:
P21/b
Setting:
P21/c
Cell Parameters:
a = 20.367(1) Å, b = 6.8329(1) Å, c = 12.903(3) Å
β = 107.879(10)°
Ratio:
a:b:c = 2.981 : 1 : 1.888
Unit Cell V:
1709 ų
Z:
2
Morphology:
Blades or prisms

X-Ray Powder DiffractionHide

Powder Diffraction Data:
d-spacingIntensity
19.84(14)
9.74(100)
6.46(50)
6.01(48)
5.41(40)
4.80(64)
3.202(47)
3.038(34)

Type Occurrence of WetherilliteHide

General Appearance of Type Material:
prisms or blades, up to ca. 1 mm, with irregular terminations; in subparallel intergrowths, divergent sprays and jackstraw-like aggregates; additional crystal habit info: [010] elongation, somewhat flattened on {10_1}, showing {100}, {101}, and <
Place of Conservation of Type Material:
Cotype material is deposited in the collections of the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, USA, catalogue numbers 64164 and 64172, and the Fersman Mineralogical Museum of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia, registration number 4574
Geological Setting of Type Material:
secondary alteration phase in humid underground mine environment , in efflorescences covering mine walls
Associated Minerals at Type Locality:

Synonyms of WetherilliteHide

Other InformationHide

Notes:
Easily soluble in cold (RT) water; Raman bands [cm-1]: ~3600–3000 [υ(O-H) stretching of free or weakly H-bonded water], 1610 [υ2(δ) H-O-H bending], 1230, 1180, 1120, 1105, 1080 [split triply degenerate υ3 sulfate antisymmetric stretching], 1010(s,b) 995(s,b) [υ1 sulfate symmetric stretching], 990sh [δ(U-OH) bending or υ1 of sulfate], 830vs [υ1 symmetric stretching of uranyl groups], 640, 615, 580sh [split, triply degenerate υ4(δ) of sulfate], 506, 445 [split doubly degenerate υ2(δ) sulfate bending], 385 [υ(U-Oequatorial) or Na-O stretching], 240 [composite band, split doubly degenerate υ2(δ) uranyl bending]
Health Risks:
radioactive

References for WetherilliteHide

Reference List:
Sort by Year (asc) | by Year (desc) | by Author (A-Z) | by Author (Z-A)
Kampf, A.R., Plášil, J., Kasatkin, A.V. and Marty, J. (2014) Whetherillite, IMA 2014-044. CNMNC Newsletter No. 22, October 2014, page 1243; Mineralogical Magazine, 78, 1241-1248.
Kampf, A.R., Plášil, J., Kasatkin, A.V., Marty, J. (2015): Bobcookite, NaAl(UO2)2(SO4)4·18H2O and wetherillite, Na2Mg(UO2)2(SO4)4·18H2O, two new uranyl sulfate minerals from the Blue Lizard mine, San Juan County, Utah, USA. Mineralogical Magazine: 79: 695-714; in: Gagne, O.C., Belakovskiy, D.I., Cámara, F. (2016): New mineral names. American Mineralogist: 101: 1240-1243

Internet Links for WetherilliteHide

Localities for WetherilliteHide

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.
USA (TL)
 
  • Utah
    • San Juan Co.
      • White Canyon District
        • Red Canyon
Kampf, A.R., Plášil, J., Kasatkin, A.V. and Marty, J. (2014) Whetherillite, IMA 2014-044. CNMNC Newsletter No. 22, October 2014, page 1243; Mineralogical Magazine, 78, 1241-1248.;Kampf, A.R., Plášil, J., Kasatkin, A.V., Marty, J. (2015): Bobcookite, NaAl(UO2)2(SO4)4·18H2O and wetherillite, Na2Mg(UO2)2(SO4)4·18H2O, two new uranyl sulfate minerals from the Blue Lizard mine, San Juan County, Utah, USA. Mineralogical Magazine, 79, 695-714.
Kampf, A.R., Plášil, J., Kasatkin, A.V., Marty, J., Čejka, J. and Lapčák, L. (2015) Shumwayite, IMA 2015-058. CNMNC Newsletter No. 27, October 2015, page 1228; Mineralogical Magazine, 79, 1229–1236.
Mineral and/or Locality  
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