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Cryptochalcite, K2 Cu5 O(SO4)5, and cesiodymite, CsKCu5 O(SO4)5, two new isotypic minerals and the K–Cs isomorphism in this solid-solution series

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Two new isotypic minerals cryptochalcite, K2 Cu5 O(SO4)5, and cesiodymite, CsKCu5 O(SO4)5, were found in fumarole sublimates at the Second scoria cone of the Northern Breakthrough of the Great Tolbachik Fissure Eruption, Tolbachik volcano, Kamchatka, Russia. They are associated with one another and with euchlorine, chalcocyanite, alumoklyuchevskite, anglesite, fedotovite, wulffite, langbeinite, aphthitalite, steklite, hematite. Both minerals are visually indistinguishable from one another and form coarse tabular or prismatic crystals or grains up to 0.3 mm. They are brittle, transparent, light green to green, with vitreous lustre. Calculated densities for cryptochalcite and cesiodymite are 3.41 and 3.59 g cm3, respectively. Both are optically biaxial (–); cryptochalcite: a 1.610(3), b 1.632 (4), g 1.643(4), 2 V meas 65(5)°; cesiodymite: a 1.61(1), b 1.627(4), g 1.635(4), 2 V meas 70(10)°. The empirical formulae, based on 21 O apfu, are: cryptochalcite, (K1.83 Na0.09 Rb0.09 Cs0.06)S 2.07 (Cu3.86 Zn1.02 Mg0.19)Σ5.07 S4.97 O21; cesiodymite, (K1.14 Rb0.16 Cs0.73)Σ2.03 (Cu3.69Zn1.33)Σ5.02S4.99 O21. Both minerals are triclinic, P -1, Z = 4; cryptochalcite: a 10.0045(3), b 12.6663(4), c 14.4397(5) Å, α 102.194 (3), β 101.372(3), γ 90.008(3)° , V 1751.7(1) Å3; cesiodymite: a 10.0682(4), b 12.7860(7), c 14.5486(8) Å, α 102.038(5), β 100.847(4), g 89.956(4)°, V 1797.5(2)Å3. Their crystal structures are topologically identical and have been refined from single-crystal X-ray diffraction data to final agreement indices R = 0.0503 for cryptochalcite and 0.0898 for cesiodymite. They are based upon the heteropolyhedral {Cu5 O(SO4)5}2 framework composed by two types of alternating Cu2+ -S-O polyhedral layers {Cu2 (SO4)2}0 and {Cu3 O(SO4)}2+ connected via SO4 tetrahedra. K and Cs cations occupy sites in the tunnels of the framework. Cryptochalcite is named from Greek κρνπτóξ, concealed, and χαγκóξ, copper: it is associated with other green copper oxysulfates and is visually very similar to them. Cesiodymite is named from cesium and Greek δiδνμoξ, a twin brother, being a Cs-K-ordered analogue of cryptochalcite.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2018

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  • The European Journal of Mineralogy publishes original papers, review articles and letters dealing with the mineralogical sciences s.l. These include primarily mineralogy, petrology, geochemistry, crystallography and ore deposits, as well as environmental, applied and technical mineralogy. Nevertheless, papers in any related field, including cultural heritage, will be considered.
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