Zaratite

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Zaratite
Zaratite Hydrous basic nickel carbonate Lor Brassey mine Heeazlewood Tasmania 1966.jpg
Zaratite from Tasmania
General
Category Carbonates
Formula
(repeating unit)
Ni3CO3(OH)4·4H2O
Strunz classification 5.DA.70
Crystal system Isometric (in part amorphous)
Unit cell a = 6.16 Å; Z = 1

Zaratite is a bright emerald green and questionable nickel carbonate mineral with formula Ni3CO3(O H)4·4 H2O. Zaratite crystallizes in the isometric crystal system as massive to mammillary encrustations and vein fillings. It has a specific gravity of 2.6 and a Mohs hardness of 3 to 3.5. It has no cleavage and is brittle to conchoidal fracture. The luster is vitreous to greasy.

It is a rare secondary mineral formed by hydration or alteration of the primary nickel and iron bearing minerals, chromite, pentlandite, pyrrhotite, and millerite, during the serpentinization of ultramafic rocks. Hellyerite, NiCO3·6H2O, is a related mineral.

It was found originally in Galicia, Spain in 1851, and named after Spanish diplomat and dramatist Antonio Gil y Zárate (1793–1861).

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