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colorless, white
Named after its locality (Cerro San Cristobal, Mexico).
The cubic high-temperature polymorph of cristobalite, stable at temperatures above 1470°C (the transition is slow and the transition temperature difficult to determine; for a review see Heaney, 1994).
Found in volcanic environments. Specimens in collections are paramorphs of tetragonal α-cristobalite after β-cristobalite.

Classification of β-Cristobalite

Physical Properties of β-Cristobalite

Diaphaneity (Transparency):
colorless, white

Chemical Properties of β-Cristobalite

Elements listed in formula:

Crystallography of β-Cristobalite

Crystal System:
Class (H-M):
m3m (4/m 3 2/m) - Hexoctahedral
Space Group:
Cell Parameters:
a = 4.96937 Å, c = 6.92563 Å
a:c = 1 : 1.394
Unit Cell Volume:
V 171.026 ų
Pseudo octahedral crystals, commonly dendritic, spherulites.
Spinel law twinning (1 1 1) is common

Epitaxial Relationships of β-Cristobalite

Epitaxial Minerals:

Relationship of β-Cristobalite to other Species

Common Associates:

Other Names for β-Cristobalite

Name in Other Languages:

Other Information

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 β-Cristobalite

Reference List:
vom Rath, G. (1887) Ueber Cristobalit vom Cerro S. Cristóbal bei Pachuca (Mexico). Neues Jahrbuch für Mineralogie, Geologie und Paläontologie: 1987: 198-199.

Heaney, P.J. (1994) Structure and chemistry of the low-pressure silica polymorphs. In: Reviews in Mineralogy, Volume 29, Silica - Physical behavior, geochemistry and materials applications. Mineralogical Society of America, Washington, D.C.

Internet Links for β-Cristobalite URL:
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