Megawite, CaSnO3: a new perovskite-group mineral from skarns of the Upper Chegem caldera, Kabardino-Balkaria, Northern Caucasus, Russia
Megawite is a perovskite-group mineral with an ideal formula CaSnO3 that was discovered in altered silicate-carbonate xenoliths in the Upper Chegem caldera, Kabardino-Balkaria, Northern Caucasus, Russia. Megawite occurs in ignimbrite, where it forms by contact metamorphism at a temperature >800ºC and low pressure. The name megawite honours the British crystallographer Helen Dick Megaw (1907–2002) who did pioneering research on perovskite-group minerals. Megawite is associated with spurrite, reinhardbraunsite, rondorfite, wadalite, srebrodolskite, lakargiite, perovskite, kerimasite, elbrusite-(Zr), periclase, hydroxylellestadite, hydrogrossular, ettringite-group minerals, afwillite, hydrocalumite and brucite. Megawite forms pale yellow or colourless crystals up to 15 μm on edge with pseudo-cubic and pseudo-cuboctahedral habits. The calculated density and average refractive index are 5.06 g cm–3 and 1.89, respectively. Megawite is Zr-rich and usually crystallizes on lakargiite, CaZrO3. The main bands in the Raman spectrum of megawite are at: 159, 183, 262, 283, 355, 443, 474, 557 and 705 cm–1. The unit-cell parameters and space group of megawite, derived from electron back scattered diffraction, are: a = 5.555(3), b = 5.708(2), c = 7.939(5) Å, V = 251.8(1) Å3, Pbnm, Z = 4; they are based on an orthorhombic structural model for the synthetic perovskite CaSn0.6 Zr0.4O3.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 01 October 2011