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Beryl

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Formula:
Be3Al2(Si6O18)
Colour:
Colorless, green, blue, yellow, white, pink, etc.
Lustre:
Vitreous, Sub-Vitreous, Waxy, Greasy
Hardness:
7½ - 8
Specific Gravity:
2.63 - 2.92
Crystal System:
Hexagonal
Member of:
Name:
Possibly from the Greek "beryllos" which referred to a number of blue-green stones in antiquity.
May be confused with apatite.

The largest beryl crystal reported was 18 m long and 3.5 m wide from Malakialina, Madagascar, but in the absence of anything more than a personal communication, the report is doubtful.

Microporous beryl (and cordierite) may contain some molecular N2 (Bebout et al., 2006).

Cordierite and (especially) its HT-polymorph indialite are somewhat structurally similar to beryl.

Visit gemdat.org for gemological information about Beryl.


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Classification of BerylHide

Approved, 'Grandfathered' (first described prior to 1959)
9.CJ.05

9 : SILICATES (Germanates)
C : Cyclosilicates
J : [Si6O18]12- 6-membered single rings (sechser-Einfachringe), without insular complex anions
61.1.1.1

61 : CYCLOSILICATES Six-Membered Rings
1 : Six-Membered Rings with [Si6O18] rings; possible (OH) and Al substitution
16.6.1

16 : Silicates Containing Aluminum and other Metals
6 : Aluminosilicates of Be

Pronounciation of BerylHide

Pronounciation:
PlayRecorded byCountry
Jolyon & Katya RalphUnited Kingdom

Physical Properties of BerylHide

Vitreous, Sub-Vitreous, Waxy, Greasy
Colour:
Colorless, green, blue, yellow, white, pink, etc.
Streak:
White
Hardness:
7½ - 8 on Mohs scale
Tenacity:
Brittle
Cleavage:
Imperfect/Fair
{0001}
Fracture:
Conchoidal
Density:
2.63 - 2.92 g/cm3 (Measured)    

Optical Data of BerylHide

Type:
Uniaxial (-)
RI values:
nω = 1.568 - 1.602 nε = 1.564 - 1.595
Max Birefringence:
δ = 0.004 - 0.007
Image shows birefringence interference colour range (at 30µm thickness)
and does not take into account mineral colouration.
Surface Relief:
Moderate

Chemical Properties of BerylHide

Formula:
Be3Al2(Si6O18)
IMA Formula:
Be3Al2Si6O18
Common Impurities:
Fe,Mn,Mg,Ca,Cr,Na,Li,Cs,O,H,OH,H2O,K,Rb

Crystallography of BerylHide

Crystal System:
Hexagonal
Class (H-M):
6/mmm (6/m 2/m 2/m) - Dihexagonal Dipyramidal
Space Group:
P6/mcc
Cell Parameters:
a = 9.21 Å, c = 9.19 Å
Ratio:
a:c = 1 : 0.998
Unit Cell V:
675.10 ų (Calculated from Unit Cell)
Z:
2

Crystallographic forms of BerylHide

Crystal Atlas:
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Beryl no.12 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Beryl no.23 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Beryl no.24 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Beryl no.32 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Beryl no.98 - Goldschmidt (1913-1926)
Beryl - Tabular {001}
3d models and HTML5 code kindly provided by www.smorf.nl.

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X-Ray Powder DiffractionHide

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Radiation - Copper Kα
Data Set:
Data courtesy of RRUFF project at University of Arizona, used with permission.
Powder Diffraction Data:
d-spacingIntensity
7.98 (90)
4.60 (50)
3.99 (50)
3.25 (100)
3.01 (40)
2.87 (100)
2.52 (30)
1.99 (20)

Synonyms of BerylHide

Other Language Names for BerylHide

Basque:Berilo
Bishnupriya Manipuri:বেরিলো
Bosnian (Latin Script):Beril
Bulgarian:Берил
Croatian:Beril
Czech:Beryl
Dutch:Beryl
Finnish:Berylli
French:Béryl
Galician:Berilo
Hebrew:בריל
Hungarian:Berill
Italian:Berillo
Japanese:緑柱石
Latin:Beryllus
Latvian:Berils
Lithuanian:Berilas
Low Saxon:Beryll
Polish:Beryl
Portuguese:Berilo
Romanian:Beril
Russian:Берилл
Serbian (Cyrillic Script):Берил
Simplified Chinese:绿柱石
绿色绿宝石
Slovak:Beryl
Swedish:Beryll
Traditional Chinese:綠柱石
Turkish:Beril
Ukrainian:Берил
Wolof:Beril

Varieties of BerylHide

AeroidesA pale blue gem beryl
Alkali-berylVariety of beryl high in alkalis (Li2O to 2%, Na2O to 4%, K2O to 2%, Rb2O to 1.3% and Cs2O to 4.6%)

See also:

Caesium beryl

Rosterite

Vorobyevite
Améthiste Basaltine (of Egleston)Violet Beryl
AquamarineA sky-blue to sea-green gem variety of beryl. It is mainly associated with granitic pegmatites.
Blue Beryl (Maxixe)A pleochroic light-sensitive variety containing 2.8% Cs2O and 1% Li2O - however the colour is caused by [CO3]- chromophore centers. See the section on chromophores on the calcium page for more information.
Originally reported from Maxixe Mine, Piauí Val...
Caesium BerylThe term 'caesium beryl' refers to a caesium-bearing beryl. The names vorobyevite and rosterite have both been used to refer to such material however the use of these names should be discouraged.

EmeraldA green gem variety of Beryl, highly sought after as a precious gem stone. The majority of the world's gem quality Emeralds come from the Muzo area of Colombia.

The colour in Emerald is caused by trace amounts of a chromophore such as Chromium or Vana...
GosheniteAn almost colourless variety of Beryl.
Originally described from Barrus Farm locality, Goshen, Hampshire Co., Massachusetts, USA.
HeliodorA golden yellow gem variety of Beryl.
Originally reported from both "Hoffnungstrahl"-Pegmatite near Rössing station, Arandis, Arandis District, Erongo Region, Namibia and Litchfield Co., Connecticut, USA.

NOTE: "Heliodor" has been reported from sev...
MorganiteA pink gem variety of Beryl.
PacheaA dark green Chromium-rich gem variety
RaspberylA marketing term for a raspberry red beryl, also used for some raspberry-red Pezzottaite (Cesium Beryl) crystals from Madagascar. Note that there is no relationship between the raspberry red colour and the cesium content, i.e. a raspberry red beryl can be...
Red BerylA gooseberry red variety of Beryl.
Originally described from Maynard's Claim (Pismire Knolls), Thomas Range, Juab Co., Utah, USA.
Riesling BerylOriginally discovered in Germany in the 1850s, a leek-green (grape) coloured gem variety of Beryl.
RosteriteAn alkali beryl from San Piero in Campo, Elba, Italy.

Described as a new species by G.Grattarola (1880) Riv. Sci. indust, no.19

Discredited by F.Zambonini and G. Caglioti (1928) Gazz. Chim. Ital. 58, 131 to be an alkali beryl with 0.4% Li2O, 4.2% Na...
Trapiche emeraldVariety showing six-spoked growth features.

Such "trapiche" formations are also known for other minerals (trapiche tourmaline, trapiche ruby).

Relationship of Beryl to other SpeciesHide

Member of:
Other Members of this group:
BazziteBe3Sc2(Si6O18)Hex. 6/mmm (6/m 2/m 2/m) : P6/mcc
PezzottaiteCs(Be2Li)Al2(Si6O18)Trig. 3 : R3
StoppaniiteBe3Fe3+2(Si6O18) · H2OHex. 6/mmm (6/m 2/m 2/m) : P6/mcc

Common AssociatesHide

Associated Minerals Based on Photo Data:
Muscovite293 photos of Beryl associated with Muscovite on mindat.org.
Quartz260 photos of Beryl associated with Quartz on mindat.org.
Schorl165 photos of Beryl associated with Schorl on mindat.org.
Albite113 photos of Beryl associated with Albite on mindat.org.
Microcline71 photos of Beryl associated with Microcline on mindat.org.
Fluorite52 photos of Beryl associated with Fluorite on mindat.org.
Smoky Quartz47 photos of Beryl associated with Smoky Quartz on mindat.org.
K Feldspar46 photos of Beryl associated with K Feldspar on mindat.org.
Feldspar Group44 photos of Beryl associated with Feldspar Group on mindat.org.
Aquamarine42 photos of Beryl associated with Aquamarine on mindat.org.

Related Minerals - Nickel-Strunz GroupingHide

9.CJ.05BazziteBe3Sc2(Si6O18)Hex. 6/mmm (6/m 2/m 2/m) : P6/mcc
9.CJ.05IndialiteMg2Al3(AlSi5O18)Hex. 6/mmm (6/m 2/m 2/m) : P6/mcc
9.CJ.05StoppaniiteBe3Fe3+2(Si6O18) · H2OHex. 6/mmm (6/m 2/m 2/m) : P6/mcc
9.CJ.10Cordierite(Mg,Fe)2Al3(AlSi5O18)Orth. mmm (2/m 2/m 2/m) : Cccm
9.CJ.10Sekaninaite(Fe,Mg)2Al3(AlSi5O18)Orth.
9.CJ.15aCombeiteNa2Ca2(Si6O18)0.5Trig. 3m (3 2/m) : R3m
9.CJ.15bImandriteNa12Ca3Fe3+2(Si6O18)2Orth.
9.CJ.15aKazakoviteNa6Mn2+Ti(Si6O18)Trig.
9.CJ.15cKoashviteNa6(Ca,Mn)(Ti,Fe)Si6O18 · H2OOrth.
9.CJ.15aLovozeriteNa2Ca(Zr,Ti)(Si6O12)[(OH)4O2] · H2OMon.
9.CJ.15aTisinaliteNa3H3(Mn,Ca,Fe)TiSi6(O,OH)18 · 2H2OTrig.
9.CJ.15aZirsinaliteNa6(Ca,Mn2+,Fe2+)Zr(Si6O18)Trig.
9.CJ.15aLitvinskiteNa2(◻,Na,Mn)ZrSi6O12(OH,O)6Mon. m : Bm
9.CJ.15aKapustiniteNa5(Na,Mn2+)<1Zr(H2Si6O18)Mon. 2/m
9.CJ.25BaratoviteKCa7(Ti,Zr)2Li3Si12O36F2Mon.
9.CJ.25KatayamaliteKLi3Ca7Ti2(SiO3)12(OH)2Mon. 2/m : B2/b
9.CJ.25AleksandroviteKCa7Sn2Li3Si12O36F2Mon. 2/m : B2/b
9.CJ.30DioptaseCuSiO3 · H2OTrig. 3 : R3
9.CJ.35KostyleviteK2Zr(Si3O9) · H2OMon.
9.CJ.40PetarasiteNa5Zr2(Si6O18)(Cl,OH) · 2H2OMon. 2/m : P21/m
9.CJ.45Gerenite-(Y)(Ca,Na)2(Y,REE)3Si6O18 · 2H2OTric.
9.CJ.50OdintsoviteK2Na4Ca3Ti2Be4Si12O38Orth.
9.CJ.55MathewrogersitePb7FeAl3GeSi12O36(OH,H2O)6Trig.
9.CJ.60PezzottaiteCs(Be2Li)Al2(Si6O18)Trig. 3 : R3

Related Minerals - Dana Grouping (8th Ed.)Hide

61.1.1.2BazziteBe3Sc2(Si6O18)Hex. 6/mmm (6/m 2/m 2/m) : P6/mcc
61.1.1.3IndialiteMg2Al3(AlSi5O18)Hex. 6/mmm (6/m 2/m 2/m) : P6/mcc

Related Minerals - Hey's Chemical Index of Minerals GroupingHide

16.6.2EuclaseBeAl(SiO4)(OH)Mon. 2/m : P21/b
16.6.3BaveniteCa4Be2Al2Si9O26(OH)2Orth. mm2
16.6.4AminoffiteCa2(Be,Al)(Si2O7)(H2O,OH)Tet.
16.6.5MilariteK2Ca4Al2Be4Si24O60 · H2OHex. 6/mmm (6/m 2/m 2/m) : P6/mcc
16.6.6LovdariteK2Na6Be4Si14O36 · 9H2OOrth. mm2
16.6.7Surinamite(Mg,Fe)3Al4BeSi3O16Mon.
16.6.8Ferrotaaffeite-6N'3S(Be,Zn,Mg)FeAl4O8Trig.

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.

Beryl in petrologyHide

An essential component of rock names highlighted in red, an accessory component in rock names highlighted in green.

References for BerylHide

Reference List:
Sort by Year (asc) | by Year (desc) | by Author (A-Z) | by Author (Z-A)
Gesner, C. (1565) Gemmis, quae erant in veste Aaronis, Liber Graecus, & e regione Latinus, Iola Hierotarantino interprete: cum Corollario Conradi Gesneri. in Sancti Patris Epiphanii Episcopi Cypri ad Diodorum Tyri episcopum, De XII, 1-29.
Vauquelin, L.N. (1798) Sur une nouvelle terre tirée de l'aigue marine, ou beril. Observations sur la Physique, sur l’Histoire Naturelle et sur les Arts: 46: 158-158.
Gibbs, G.V., Breck, D.W., Meagher, E.P. (1968) Structural refinement of hydrous and anhydrous synthetic beryl, Al2(Be3Si6)O18 and emerald, Al1.9Cr0.1(Be3Si6)O18. Lithos: 1: 275-285.
Adams, D.M., Gardner, I.R. (1974) Single-crystal vibrational spectra of beryl and dioptase. Dalton Transactions: 1974: 1502-1505.
Černý, P., Hawthorne, F.C. (1976) Refractive indices versus alkali contents in beryl: General limitations and applications to some pegmatitic types. The Canadian Mineralogist: 14: 491-497.
Hawthorne, F.C., Černý, P. (1977) The alkali-metal positions in Cs-Li beryl. The Canadian Mineralogist: 15: 414-421.
Scandale, E., Scordari, F., Zarka, A. (1979) étude des défauts dans des monocristaux natures de béryl. I. Observations des dislocations. Journal of Applied Crystallography: 12: 70-77.
Scandale, E., Scordari, F., Zarka, A. (1979) étude des défauts dans des monocristaux natures de béryl. II. Etude de croissance. Journal of Applied Crystallography: 12: 78-83.
Hofmeister, A.M., Hoering, T.C., Virgo, D. (1987) Vibrational spectroscopy of beryllium aluminosilicates: heat capacity calculations from band assignments. Physics and Chemistry of Minerals: 14: 205-224.
Manier-Glavinaz, V., Couty, R., Lagache, M. (1989) The removal of alkalis from beryl: Structural adjustments. The Canadian Mineralogist: 27: 663-671.
Graziani, G., Lucchesi, S., Scandale, E. (1990) General and Specific Growth Marks in Pegmatite Beryls. Physics and Chemistry of Minerals: 17: 379-384.
Hagemann, H., Lucken, A., Bill, H., Gysler-Sanz, J., Stalder, H.A. (1990) Polarized Raman spectra of beryl and bazzite. Physics and Chemistry of Minerals: 17: 395-401.
Sherriff, B.L., Grundy, H.D., Hartman, J.S., Hawthorne, F.C., Černý, P. (1991) The incorporation of alkalis in beryl: multi-nuclear MAS NMR and crystal-structure study. The Canadian Mineralogist: 29: 271-285.
Taylor, R.P., Fallick, A.E., Breaks, F.W. (1992) Volatile evolution in Archean rare-element granitic pegmatites: evidence from the hydrogen isotopic composition of channel H2O in beryl. The Canadian Mineralogist: 30: 877-893.
Scandale, E., Lucchesi, S., Graziani, G. (1993) Improvements on the growth history reconstruction of a beryl crystal by growth marks. Neues Jahrbuch für Mineralogie Monatshefte: 4: 172-184.
Artioli, G., Rindali, R., Ståhl, K., Zanazzi, P.F. (1993) Structure refinements of beryl by single-crystal neutron and X-ray diffraction. American Mineralogist: 78: 762-768.
Kim, C.C., Bell, M.I., McKeown, D.A. (1995) Vibrational analysis of beryl (Be3Al2Si6O18) and its constituent ring (Si6O18). Physica B: 205: 193-208.
Pilati, T., Demartin, F., Gramaccioli, C.M. (1997) Lattice-dynamical evaluation of thermodynamic properties and atomic displacement parameters for beryl using a transferable empirical force field. American Mineralogist: 82: 1054-1062.
Moroz, I., Roth, M., Boudeulle, M., Panczer, G. (2000) Raman microspectroscopy and fluorescence of emeralds from various deposits. Journal of Raman Spectroscopy: 31: 485-490.
Scandale, E., Lucchesi, S. (2000) Growth and sector zoning in a beryl crystal. European Journal of Mineralogy: 12: 357-366.
Hänni, H.A., Krzemnicki, M.S. (2003) Caesium-rich morganite from Afghanistan and Madagascar. Journal of Gemmology: 28: 417-429.
Kleišmantas, A. (2003): Effects of chemical composition and temperature on the formation of beryl varieties. Geologija 41, 3-13. [http://www.lmaleidykla.lt/publ/1392-110X/2003/1/G-03.pdf]
Simmons, W.S., Staebler, G., Wilson, T., Wise, M. (editors) (2005) Beryl and Its Color Varieties, Extra Lapis English No. 7.
Diego Gatta, G., Nestola, F., Bromiley, G.D., Mattauch, S. (2006) The real topological configuration of the extra-framework content in alkali-poor beryl: a multi-methodological study. American Mineralogist: 91: 29-34.
Adamo, I., Gatta, G.D., Rotiroti, N., Diella, V., Pavese, A. (2008) Gemmological investigation of a synthetic blue beryl: a multi-methodological study. Mineralogical Magazine: 72: 799-808.
Le, T.-T. H. (2008) Microscopic, chemical and spectroscopic investigations on emeralds of various origins. Dissertation, Universität Mainz, Germany, 113 pp. [http://ubm.opus.hbz-nrw.de/volltexte/2008/1673/pdf/diss.pdf]
Fukuda, J., Shinoda, K., Nakashima, S., Miyoshi, N., Aikawa, N. (2009) Polarized infrared spectroscopic study of diffusion of water molecules along structure channels in beryl. American Mineralogist: 94: 981-985.
Groat, L.A., Rossman, G.R., Dyar, M.D., Turner, D., Piccoli, P.M.B., Schultz, A.J., Ottolini, L. (2010) Crystal chemistry of dark blue aquamarine from the True Blue showing, Yukon Territory, Canada. The Canadian Mineralogist: 48: 597-613.
Huong, L.T.T., Häger, T., Hofmeister, W. (2010) Confocal micro-Raman spectroscopy: a powerful tool to identify natural and synthetic emeralds. Gems & Gemology: 46: 36-41.
Andersson, L.O. (2013) The yellow color center and trapped electrons in beryl. The Canadian Mineralogist: 51: 15-25.
Přikryl, J., Novák, M., Filip, J., Gadas, P., Galiová, M.V. (2014) Iron+magnesium-bearing beryl from granitic pegmatites: an EMPA, LA-ICP-MS, Mössbauer spectroscopy, and powder XRD study. The Canadian Mineralogist: 52: 271-284.
Sardi, F.G., Heimann, A. (2014) Pegmatitic beryl as indicator of melt evolution: example from the Velasco district, Pampeana Pegmatite Province, Argentina, and review of worldwide occurrences. The Canadian Mineralogist: 52: 809-836.
Jana Fridrichová, Peter Bačík, Petra Rusinová, Marcel Miglierini, Valéria Bizovská, Peter Antal (2014): Crystal-chemical effects of heat treatment on aquamarines and yellow beryl from Thanh Hoa Province, Vietnam. 4th Central European Mineralogical Conference, Skalský Dvůr, Czech Republic, 23-26 April 2014, Abstract Volume, 39. [http://www.mineralogickaspolocnost.sk/data/CEMC-2014/Fridrichova2.pdf]
Ollier, N., Fuchs, Y., Cavani, O., Horn, A.H., Rossano, S. (2015) Influence of impurities on Cr3+ luminescence properties in Brazilian emerald and alexandrite. European Journal of Mineralogy: 27: 783-792.
Bebout, G.E., Lazzeri, K.E., Geiger, C.A. (2016): Pathways for nitrogen cycling in Earth’s crust and upper mantle: A review and new results for microporous beryl and cordierite. American Mineralogist: 101: 7-24.
A.I. Kolesnikov, G.F. Reiter, N. Choudhury, T.R. Prisk, E. Mamontov, A. Podlesnyak, G. Ehlers, A.G. Seel, D.J. Wesolowski, and L.M. Anovitz (2016): Quantum tunneling of water in beryl: A new state of the water molecule. Physical Review Letters 116, 167802. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.116.167802

Internet Links for BerylHide

Localities for BerylHide

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