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Encyclopedia > Spodumene
Spodumene

An almost colorless kunzite crystal (upper left), a cut pale pink kunzite (upper right) and a greenish hiddenite crystal (below)
General
Category Mineral
Chemical formula lithium aluminium silicate, LiAl(SiO3)2
Identification
Color Highly variable: white, colorless, gray, pink, lilac, violet, yellow and green
Crystal habit prismatic, generally flattened and elongated
Crystal system monoclinic; 2/m
Cleavage Perfect prismatic, two directions at nearly 90°
Fracture Sub-conchoidal
Mohs Scale hardness 6.5 - 7
Luster Vitreous
Refractive index 1.66-1.68
Pleochroism Strong in kunzite: pink, colorless; hiddenite: yellow-green, blue-green
Streak white
Specific gravity 3.17-3.19
Fusibility 3.5
Solubility insoluble
Other Characteristics Tenebrescence, chatoyancy, kunzite often fluorescent under UV

Spodumene is a pyroxene mineral consisting of lithium aluminium inosilicate - LiAl(SiO3)2 - and is a source of lithium. It occurs as colorless to yellowish, purplish or lilac kunzite (see below), yellowish-green or emerald-green hiddenite, prismatic crystals, often of great size. Single crystals of 14.3m in size are reported from the Black Hills of South Dakota.[1] Image File history File linksMetadata Spodumene. ... For other uses, see Mineral (disambiguation). ... A chemical formula is a concise way of expressing information about the atoms that constitute a particular chemical compound. ... This article is about the chemical element named Lithium. ... “Aluminum” redirects here. ... In mineralogy, shape and size give rise to descriptive terms applied to the typical appearance, or habit of crystals. ... A crystal system is a category of space groups, which characterize symmetry of structures in three dimensions with translational symmetry in three directions, having a discrete class of point groups. ... In crystallography, the monoclinic crystal system is one of the 7 lattice point groups. ... Cleavage, in mineralogy, is the tendency of crystalline materials to split along definite planes, creating smooth surfaces, of which there are several named types: Basal cleavage: cleavage parallel to the base of a crystal, or to the plane of the lateral axes. ... For other uses, see Fracture (disambiguation). ... Mohs scale of mineral hardness characterizes the scratch resistance of various minerals through the ability of a harder material to scratch a softer. ... Lustre (American English: luster) is a description of the way light interacts with the surface of a crystal, rock or mineral. ... The refractive index (or index of refraction) of a medium is a measure for how much the speed of light (or other waves such as sound waves) is reduced inside the medium. ... Pleochroism is an optical phenomenon in which grains of a rock appear to be different colors when observed at different angles,under a petrographic microscope. ... The streak (also called powder color) of a mineral is the color of the powder produced when it is dragged across a unweathered surface. ... Relative density (also known as specific gravity) is a measure of the density of a material. ... Fusibility is the ease with which a material will melt. ... Solubility is a chemical property referring to the ability for a given substance, the solute, to dissolve in a solvent. ... Tenebrescence, also known as reversible photochromism, is the ability of minerals to change colour when exposed to sunlight. ... Tiger eye In gemology, chatoyancy (or chatoyance) is an optical reflectance effect seen in certain gemstones. ... Fluorescence induced by exposure to ultraviolet light in vials containing various sized cadmium selenide (CdSe) quantum dots. ... Note: Ultraviolet is also the name of a 1998 UK television miniseries about vampires. ... Figure 1:Mantle-peridotite xenolith with green peridot olivine and black pyroxene crystals from San Carlos Indian Reservation, Gila Co. ... For other uses, see Mineral (disambiguation). ... This article is about the chemical element named Lithium. ... “Aluminum” redirects here. ... The silicate minerals make up the largest and most important class of rock-forming minerals. ... Spodumene is a pyroxene mineral consisting of lithium aluminium inosilicate - LiAl(SiO3)2 - and is a source of lithium. ... This article is about the place in South Dakota. ... Official language(s) English Capital Pierre Largest city Sioux Falls Area  Ranked 17th  - Total 77,116[1] sq mi (199,905 km²)  - Width 210 miles (340 km)  - Length 380 miles (610 km)  - % water 1. ...


Crystals form in the monoclinic system and are typically heavily striated parallel to the principal axis. Crystal faces are often etched and pitted with triangular markings. In crystallography, the monoclinic crystal system is one of the 7 lattice point groups. ...


Spodumene is derived from the Greek spodumenos (σποδυμενος), meaning "burnt to ashes," owing to the opaque, ash-grey appearance of material refined for use in industry.


Spodumene occurs in lithium rich granites and pegmatites. Transparent material has long been used as a gemstone with varieties kunzite and hiddenite noted for their strong pleochroism. Source localities include Brazil, Madagascar, USA (North Carolina, California), Afghanistan, and Pakistan. Close-up of granite from Yosemite National Park, valley of the Merced River Quarrying granite for the Mormon Temple, Utah Territory. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... For other uses, see Gemstone (disambiguation). ... Pleochroism is an optical phenomenon in which grains of a rock appear to be different colors when observed at different angles,under a petrographic microscope. ... Official language(s) English Capital Raleigh Largest city Charlotte Largest metro area Charlotte metro area Area  Ranked 28th  - Total 53,865 sq mi (139,509 km²)  - Width 150 miles (240 km)  - Length 560[1] miles (901 km)  - % water 9. ... Official language(s) English Capital Sacramento Largest city Los Angeles Largest metro area Greater Los Angeles Area  Ranked 3rd  - Total 158,302 sq mi (410,000 km²)  - Width 250 miles (400 km)  - Length 770 miles (1,240 km)  - % water 4. ...

Contents

Economic Importance

Spodumene is an important source of lithium for use in industrial ceramics, mobile phone and automotive batteries, medicine and as a fluxing agent. Lithium is extracted from spodumene by fusing in acid. Spodumene is also an important flux in glazes used by ceramic artists, especially Shino glazes. Shino may refer to: Shino, a generic term for a family of pottery glazes. ...


World production of lithium via spodumene is around 80,000 metric tonnes per annum, primarily from the Greenbushes pegmatite of Western Australia, and some Chinese and Chilean sources. Spodumene is becoming less important a source of lithium due to the emergence of alkaline brine lake sources in China and Argentina, which produce lithium carbonate and lithium hydroxide directly.


Kunzite

Kunzite See the pleochroism and the tipical etched marks
Kunzite
See the pleochroism and the tipical etched marks

Kunzite is a pink to lilac colored gemstone, a variety of spodumene with the color coming from minor to trace amounts of manganese. Some (but not all) kunzite used for gemstones has been heated to enhance its color. It was named in honor of New York mineralogist and gemologist George Frederick Kunz. It has been found in Brazil, USA, Canada, CIS, Mexico, Sweden, Western Australia, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (1335x501, 439 KB) Kunzite crystal (pink variety of spodumene) Origin: MG, Brazil Description: pink crystal ~(10 x 3cm) Source: The authors are owners Date: created 2005-12-07 Authors: Tom Epaminondas (mineral collector) / Eurico Zimbres (FGEL-UERJ) Permission = Free for all... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (1335x501, 439 KB) Kunzite crystal (pink variety of spodumene) Origin: MG, Brazil Description: pink crystal ~(10 x 3cm) Source: The authors are owners Date: created 2005-12-07 Authors: Tom Epaminondas (mineral collector) / Eurico Zimbres (FGEL-UERJ) Permission = Free for all... For other uses, see Gemstone (disambiguation). ... General Name, symbol, number manganese, Mn, 25 Chemical series transition metals Group, period, block 7, 4, d Appearance silvery metallic Standard atomic weight 54. ... George Frederick Kunz (September 29, 1856 – June 29, 1932) was an American mineralogist. ...  Member state  Associate member Headquarters Minsk, Belarus Working language Russian Type Commonwealth Membership 11 member states 1 associate member Leaders  -  Executive Secretary Viktor Yanukovych Establishment December 21, 1991 Website http://cis. ... Slogan or Nickname: Wildflower State or the Golden State Other Australian states and territories Capital Perth Government Constitutional monarchy Governor Ken Michael Premier Alan Carpenter (ALP) Federal representation  - House seats 15  - Senate seats 12 Gross State Product (2004-05)  - Product ($m)  $100,900 (4th)  - Product per capita  $50,355/person...


References

  • Anthony, John W., Bideaux, Richard A., Bladh, Kenneth W., and Nichols, Monte C. (1990): Handbook of Mineralogy: Mineral Data Publishing, Tucson, Arizona
  • Hurlbut, Cornelius S.; Klein, Cornelis, 1985, Manual of Mineralogy, 20th ed., ISBN 0-471-80580-7
  • Kunz, George Frederick (1892) Gems and Precious Stones of North America. The Scientific Publishing Company, New York NY
  • Palache, C., Davidson, S. C., and Goranson, E.A. (1930) The Hiddenite deposit in Alexander County, N.Carolina. American Mineralogist Vol 15 No. 8 p. 280
  • Webster, R. (2000). Gems: Their sources, descriptions and identification (5th ed.), pp. 186-190. Great Britain: Butterworth-Heinemann.
  • Webmineral
  • Mindat.org
  1. ^ Robert Louis Bonewitz, 2005, Rock and Gem, London, Dorling Kindersley

See also


  Results from FactBites:
 
SPODUMENE Factsheet & Information Page at mineralminers.com (747 words)
The color in the gem varieties of spodumene is due to impurities of iron (producing yellow to green colored spodumene), chromium (producing medium-deep green colored spodumene) or manganese (producing pink to lilac spodumene), all substituting for aluminum in the crystal structure.
Spodumene is recognized by its prismatic cleavage on {110} and parting on {100}, and by its pegmatitic occurance.
Spodumene is a major source of lithium, which has a great variety of uses including in the manufacture of lubricants, ceramics, batteries, welding supplies, experimental fuels and in anti-depressant drugs.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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