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Bismutite

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Formula:
(BiO)2CO3
Colour:
Yellow to brown, greenish, green-grey, grey or black; colourless or tinted in shades of faint yellow, green, etc. in transmitted light.
Lustre:
Vitreous, Pearly, Dull, Earthy
Hardness:
2½ - 3½
Specific Gravity:
6.7 - 7.4
Crystal System:
Orthorhombic
Name:
In allusion to its bismuth-rich composition.
A common secondary Bismuth carbonate. Platy forms are visually indistinguishable from the Ca-Bi carbonates Beyerite and Kettnerite.


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Classification of BismutiteHide

Approved, 'Grandfathered' (first described prior to 1959)
5.BE.25

5 : CARBONATES (NITRATES)
B : Carbonates with additional anions, without H2O
E : With Pb, Bi
16a.3.5.1

16a : ANHYDROUS CARBONATES CONTAINING HYDROXYL OR HALOGEN
3 : (AB)2(XO3)Zq
11.10.1

11 : Carbonates
10 : Carbonates of Bi

Physical Properties of BismutiteHide

Vitreous, Pearly, Dull, Earthy
Transparency:
Transparent, Translucent
Comment:
Lustre grades to pearly in coarse, fibrous, and scaly material.
Colour:
Yellow to brown, greenish, green-grey, grey or black; colourless or tinted in shades of faint yellow, green, etc. in transmitted light.
Streak:
Grey
Hardness:
2½ - 3½ on Mohs scale
Cleavage:
Distinct/Good
On {001} (observed only in microscopic grains).
Density:
6.7 - 7.4 g/cm3 (Measured)    8.15 g/cm3 (Calculated)

Optical Data of BismutiteHide

Type:
Uniaxial
RI values:
nα = 2.120 - 2.150 nβ = 2.120 - 2.300
Max Birefringence:
δ = 2.120
Image shows birefringence interference colour range (at 30µm thickness)
and does not take into account mineral colouration.
Surface Relief:
Very High

Chemical Properties of BismutiteHide

Formula:
(BiO)2CO3
IMA Formula:
Bi2O2(CO3)

Crystallography of BismutiteHide

Crystal System:
Orthorhombic
Class (H-M):
mm2 - Pyramidal
Space Group:
Imm2
Cell Parameters:
a = 3.865 Å, b = 3.862 Å, c = 13.675 Å
α = 90°, β = 90°, γ = 90°
Ratio:
a:b:c = 1.001 : 1 : 3.541
Unit Cell V:
204.1 ų
Z:
2
Morphology:
Prismatic structure at times. Pulverulent to dense earthy masses; opaline crusts; radially-fibrous crusts or spheroidal aggregates; scaly to lamellar aggregates rare.
Comment:
Pseudo-I4/mmm.

X-Ray Powder DiffractionHide

Powder Diffraction Data:
d-spacingIntensity
3.724 (30)
2.953 (100)
2.737 (41)
2.137 (25)
1.9354 (20)
1.7502 (22b)
1.6184 (30b)

Type Occurrence of BismutiteHide

Synonyms of BismutiteHide

Other Language Names for BismutiteHide

Varieties of BismutiteHide

HydrobismutiteProven identical with Bismutite. Occurred at Schorl Mountain, Transbaikalia, Russia.

Common AssociatesHide

ArsenobismiteA mixture of preisingerite, minor atelestite and minor beudantite/segnitite.
BeyeriteCa(BiO)2(CO3)2
BismiteBi2O3
BismuthBi
BismuthiniteBi2S3
CerussitePbCO3
Limonite(Fe,O,OH,H2O)
MalachiteCu2(CO3)(OH)2
MixiteBiCu6(AsO4)3(OH)6 · 3H2O
PucheriteBi(VO4)
SilléniteBi12SiO20
Associated Minerals Based on Photo Data:
Bismuthinite43 photos of Bismutite associated with Bismuthinite on mindat.org.
Goethite18 photos of Bismutite associated with Goethite on mindat.org.
Malachite18 photos of Bismutite associated with Malachite on mindat.org.
Quartz16 photos of Bismutite associated with Quartz on mindat.org.
Bismuth13 photos of Bismutite associated with Bismuth on mindat.org.
Bismite8 photos of Bismutite associated with Bismite on mindat.org.
Beyerite8 photos of Bismutite associated with Beyerite on mindat.org.
Pucherite6 photos of Bismutite associated with Pucherite on mindat.org.
Wulfenite5 photos of Bismutite associated with Wulfenite on mindat.org.
Mimetite4 photos of Bismutite associated with Mimetite on mindat.org.

Related Minerals - Nickel-Strunz GroupingHide

5.BE.XAbellaiteNaPb2(CO3)2(OH)Trig. 3m : P3 1c
5.BE.05ShannonitePb2OCO3Orth.
5.BE.10HydrocerussitePb3(CO3)2(OH)2Trig.
5.BE.15PlumbonacritePb5O(OH)2(CO3)3Trig. 3m (3 2/m) : P3c1
5.BE.20PhosgenitePb2CO3Cl2Tet. 4/mmm (4/m 2/m 2/m) : P4/mbm
5.BE.30KettneriteCaBiCO3OFOrth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m)
5.BE.35BeyeriteCa(BiO)2(CO3)2Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m) : Immm

Related Minerals - Hey's Chemical Index of Minerals GroupingHide

11.10.2BeyeriteCa(BiO)2(CO3)2Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m) : Immm

Other InformationHide

Notes:
Soluble in acids with effervescence.
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 BismutiteHide

Reference List:
Sort by Year (asc) | by Year (desc) | by Author (A-Z) | by Author (Z-A)
Beyer (1805) (as Luftsaures Wismuth).
Werner, A.G. (1817) Letztes Mineral-System. Freiberg and Vienna. A catalogue with notes: 56 (as Arsenikwismuth).
Breithaupt, A. (1841): Ueber das natürliche kohlensaure Wismutoxyd. Poggendorffs Annalen der Physik und Chemie: 53, 627-630 (as Bismutit).
Rammelsberg (1849) Annalen der Physik, Halle, Leipzig: 76: 564.
Weisbach (1877) Jahrbuch für das Berg- und Hüttenwesen im Königreiche Sachsen, Abhandlungen: 49 (as Bismutosphärit).
Winkler in: Weisbach (1882) Neues Jahrbuch für Mineralogie, Geologie und Paleontologie, Heidelberg, Stuttgart: II: 254.
Sperry in: Wells (1887) American Journal of Science: 34: 271.
Dana, E.S. (1892) System of Mineralogy, 6th. Edition, New York: 307.
Nenadkevich (1917) Bull. Ac. Sc., Petrograd: 11(6), 448, 454 (as Hydrobismutite, Basobismutite).
Raoult analysis in: Lacroix, A. (1922) Minéralogie de Madagascar, Paris. 3 volumes: 1: 297.
Hintze, Carl (1929) Handbuch der Mineralogie. Berlin and Leipzig. 6 volumes: 1 [3A]: 3404, 3406.
Mountain (1935) Mineralogical Magazine: 24: 62 (as Boksputite).
Frondel, C. (1943) Mineralogy of the oxides and carbonates of Bismuth. American Mineralogist: 28, 521-535.
Heinrich (1947) American Mineralogist: 32: 365.
Lagercrantz and Sillén (1948) Arkiv för Kemi, Mineralogi och Geologi, Stockholm: 25: 1.
Palache, C., Berman, H., & Frondel, C. (1951) The System of Mineralogy of James Dwight Dana and Edward Salisbury Dana, Yale University 1837-1892, Volume II: Halides, Nitrates, Borates, Carbonates, Sulfates, Phosphates, Arsenates, Tungstates, Molybdates, Etc. John Wiley and Sons, Inc., New York, 7th edition, revised and enlarged: 259-262.
Arkiv för Kemi, Mineralogi och Geologi: 25A: 21.
Grice (2002) A solution to the crystal structures of bismutite and beyerite. Canadian Mineralogist: 40: 693-698.

Internet Links for BismutiteHide

Localities for BismutiteHide

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 ListShow

Mineral and/or Locality  
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