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A naturally occurring mineral composed of the hydrated chloride salt of Potassium and Magnesium. Carnallite is a white or reddish, translucent mineral with a greasy luster. It often occurs in deposits rich in Potash and is found in Canada, France, Poland, Germany, Spain, Tunisia, Iran, and the western U.S. Carnallite is used in fertilizers. It has also been identified as a chloride Efflorescence.

Synonyms and Related Terms

carnalita (Esp.); Carnallit (Deut.); carnallita (Port.)

Physical and Chemical Properties

  • Orthorhombic crystalline system usually occurring in masses.
  • Soluble in water.
  • Deliquesces in humid environments.
  • Strongly phosphorescent.
  • Luster = greasy
  • Fracture = conchoidal
Composition KMgCl3-6H2O
Mohs Hardness 1.0 - 2.5
Density 1.62 g/ml
Refractive Index 1.46;1.47;1.44

Resources and Citations

  • G.S.Brady, Materials Handbook, McGraw-Hill Book Co., New York, 1971
  • Richard S. Lewis, Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993
  • Random House, Webster's Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language, Grammercy Book, New York, 1997
  • The American Heritage Dictionary or Encarta, via Microsoft Bookshelf 98, Microsoft Corp., 1998

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