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Kenhsuite and cinabrio.Oriental mine, Chóvar (Castellón)Spain.
CategorySilphohalide mineral
(repeating unit)
IMA symbolKhs[1]
Crystal systemOrthorhombic
ColorWhite or pale orange-pink to salmon-pink; darkening on exposure to light.
Crystal habitAcicular crystals
Mohs scale hardness2-3

Kenhsuite is a mercury sulfide with chloride ions. It was described as a species from specimens obtained at the McDermitt mine, in Opalite, Humboldt Nevada county, (USA). The name is a tribute to Dr. Kenneth Junghwa Hsu. Professor Emeritus of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich (Switzerland).[3]

Physical and chemical properties[edit]

Kenhsuite appears as aggregates of capillary or needle microcrystals, with a glassy or silky sheen. The mineral is originally colorless or white in color, but is most often tinged with orange or red due to the presence of associated cinnabar. Prolonged exposure to light causes their darkening. The mercury sulfide chloride with the composition of kenhsuite is known in three polymorphic forms.[4] Kenhsuita is rhombic, while the other two are corderoite and lavrientivite.[5]


Kenhsuite is an extremely rare mineral, known in very few localities in the world.[6] In the type locality, it was found as extremely small acicular or tabular crystals, less than 100 microns in size. The locality where the best specimens appear is the Oriental mine, in Chóvar, Castellón (Spain), where the acicular crystals usually exceed one millimeter, forming centimetric aggregates of fan-shaped crystals.[7] In these two deposits it appears associated with corderoite and cinnabar.


  1. ^ Warr, L.N. (2021). "IMA–CNMNC approved mineral symbols". Mineralogical Magazine. 85: 291–320.
  2. ^ Mindat
  3. ^ McCormack, J.K, and Dickson, F.W. (1998). "Kenhsuite, g-Hg3S2Cl2, a new mineral species from the McDermitt mercury deposit, Humbold County, Nevada". The Canadian Mineralogist. 36: 201–206.{{cite journal}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  4. ^ Ďurovič, S (1968). "The crystal structure of γ-Hg3S2Cl2". Acta Crystallographica Section B. 24 (12): 1661–1670. doi:10.1107/S0567740868004814.
  5. ^ Vasiliev, V.I., Palchik, N.A. and Grechishchev, O.K. (1984). "Lavrentievite and arzakite, new natural mercury sulfohalides". Geologiya I Geofizika. 25: 54–63.{{cite journal}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  6. ^ "Kenhsuite. Mindat".
  7. ^ Viñals, Joan, and Calvo, Miguel (2007). "Corderoite, kenhsuite and perroudite, mercury sulphohalides from Chóvar (Xòvar) Castelló, Spain". Mineral up. 1: 46–49. doi:10.5281/zenodo.3939085.{{cite journal}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)