Liroconite

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Liroconite
Liroconite-t07-41b.jpg
Liroconite crystals to 0.75 cm in a quartz vug, from Wheal Gorland, the type locality.
General
Category Arsenate minerals
Formula
(repeating unit)
Cu2Al[(OH)4|AsO4]·4(H2O)
Strunz classification 08.DF.20
Crystal symmetry Monoclinic prismatic (2/m)
Unit cell a = 12.66 Å, b = 7.57 Å, c = 9.89 Å; β = 91.25°; Z = 4
Identification
Color Bright blue to green
Crystal habit Typically as striated flattened octahedral or lenticular crystals, also massive to granular
Crystal system Monoclinic
Cleavage Indistinct on {110} and {011}
Fracture Irregular/uneven, conchoidal
Mohs scale hardness 2-2½
Luster Vitreous to resinous
Streak Light blue
Diaphaneity Transparent, translucent
Specific gravity 2.9 - 3
Optical properties Biaxial (-)
Refractive index nα = 1.612 nβ = 1.652 nγ = 1.675
Birefringence δ = 0.063
2V angle Measured: 67°
References [1][2][3]

Liroconite is a complex mineral: Hydrated copper aluminium arsenate hydroxide, with the formula Cu2Al[(OH)4|AsO4]·4(H2O). It is a vitreous monoclinic mineral, colored bright blue to green, often associated with malachite, azurite, olivenite, and clinoclase. It is quite soft, with a Mohs hardness of 2 - 2.5, and has a specific gravity of 2.9 - 3.0.

Vugs in gossan lined with lustrous, blue-green liroconite blades and sparkly, dark blue clinoclase microcrystals from Wheal Gorland (size: 3.4 x 3.0 x 2.0 cm)

It was first identified in 1825 in the tin and copper mines of Devon and Cornwall, England. Although it remains quite rare it has subsequently been identified in a variety of locations including France, Germany, Australia, New Jersey and California.[1]

The type locality for Liroconite is Wheal Gorland in St Day, Cornwall in the United Kingdom.[1]

It occurs as a secondary mineral in copper deposits in association with olivenite, chalcophyllite, clinoclase, cornwallite, strashimirite, malachite, cuprite and limonite.[3]

References[edit]