THE MINERAL LIBETHENITE
- Chemistry: Cu2PO4(OH), Copper Phosphate Hydroxide
- Class: Phosphates
- Uses: mineral specimens
Libethenite is a rare secondary copper mineral that is noted for its deep green color.
It is found in deeply weathered, highly concentrated copper sulfide ore bodies.
Libethenite is isostructural with the minerals olivenite
(OH) and adamite
This means that they share the same symmetry and crystal shapes.
Libethenite's emerald green color and bright luster give it a well earned place in anyones collection.
- Color is dark emerald to olive green.
- Luster is resinous to vitreous.
- Transparency: Specimens are translucent.
- Crystal System: is orthorhombic 2/m2/m2/m
- Crystal Habits include crystals that are diamond-shaped, often acicular, prisms that are terminated by a dome with triangular faces, also as tiny crystalline druzes, fiberous masses, nodules and crusts.
- Cleavage is good in two directions.
- Fracture is subconchoidal to uneven.
- Hardness is 4
- Specific Gravity is approximately 3.6 - 3.9 (above average for translucent minerals)
- Streak is olive green.
- Other Characteristics: Slightly soluable in hydrochloric acid.
- Associated Minerals are malachite, olivenite, quartz, limonite, adamite, brochantite and other secondary copper ore minerals.
- Notable Occurrences: Cornwall, England; Libethen (hence the name), Romania; Zaire; Russia and California, Utah and Arizona, USA.
- Best Field Indicators are color, streak, crystal habits, associations and density.