Aurichalcite

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Aurichalcite

Description

Aurichalcite acicular crystals

A pale green to blue mineral that is sometimes found as a encrustations on bronzes. Aurichalcite is composed of copper zinc carbonate hydroxide. As a mineral, it forms in the oxidation zones of zinc-copper deposits. Sources of the mineral are found in Greece (Laurium), Namibia (Tsumeb, Marpimi), Mexico (Durango), and the U.S. (Bisbee Arizona, Colorado, Utah. The transparent to translucent needle-like crystals grow as aggregates.

Synonyms and Related Terms

mountain copper; oreichalkos (Gr.)

Raman

Aurichalciteitaly1.jpg


Physical and Chemical Properties

  • Transparent acicular, orthorhombic crystals with silky to pearly in luster; 
  • Streak = white; 
  • Fracture = uneven; 
  • Cleavage is perfect in one direction;  
  • Reacts with acids to release carbon dioxide bubbles.
Composition (Zn,Cu)5(CO3)2(OH)6
Mohs Hardness 1 - 2
Density 3.6 - 4.0 g/ml
Molecular Weight mol. wt. = 546.71

Resources and Citations

  • Minerals: mineral.galleries.com/minerals/carbonate/aurichal/aurichal.htm (density 3.6-4.0, hardness 1-2)
  • Website: www.azminerals.com/AS%20Minerals/Aurichalcite.htm (hardness 1.5, density 3.93)
  • Website: webmineral.com/data/aurichalcite.shtml (density 3.64-3.9, hardness 2)

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