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A bronze-like mineral composed of iron sulfide. Pyrrhotite is slightly magnetic and tarnishes with time. It occurs near pyrite (Iron disulfide), Chalcopyrite, or Magnetite deposits. Pyrrhotite has been found in Rumania (Kisbanya), Austria, Italy (Trentino), Germany (Saxony, Bavaria, Andreas-Berg), Switzerland, Norway (Kongsberg), Sweden, Brazil, Canada (Bristish Columbia, Ontario), Mexico (Chihuahua) and the U.S. (Maine, Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, California).

Synonyms and Related Terms

magnetic pyrite

Physical and Chemical Properties

  • Luster = metallic.
  • Streak = grayish-black.
  • Magnetic.
  • Tarnish = dark brown
Composition Fe(1-x)Sx e.g., Fe5S6
Mohs Hardness 3.5 - 4.5
Density 4.58-4.64 g/ml

Resources and Citations

  • G.S.Brady, Materials Handbook, McGraw-Hill Book Co., New York, 1971 Comment: p. 541
  • C.W.Chesterman, K.E.Lowe, Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Rocks and Minerals, Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1979
  • Susan E. Schur, Conservation Terminology: A review of Past & Current Nomenclature of Materials, Technology and Conservation, Spring (p.34-39); Summer (p.35-38); Fall (p.25-36), 1985
  • Van Nostrand's Scientific Encyclopedia, Douglas M. Considine (ed.), Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 1976

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