Dims: 2.3" x 1.5" x 1.5" (5.8 x 3.8 x 3.8 cm)
Wt: 3.69 oz. (104.6 g)
Musonie Mine, Zaire
The Sklodowskite needles on this specimen are locked into a rather interesting formation. The cuprite-laden host rock contains a hollow inside of which the Sklodowskite needles eventually formed, creating a crust that coated its surface. Then a copper-bearing mineral that could be either cuprosklodowskite or possibly torbernite filled in the rest of the hollow. This specimen shows part of the hollow that has been broken open to reveal the yellow Sklodowskite needles penetrating partway into the green "core". There are two smaller formations like this one on opposite sides of the larger formation. The visible Sklodowskite crystals do not exceed 0.3" (8 mm) in length or 1 mm in diameter, and have the standard yellow color and a dull pearly luster. It is impossible to determine their translucence, though I doubt that they would be transparent. Close examination makes me think that maybe all of the material started out as Sklodowskite and then underwent partial pseudomorphing, or maybe the material started out as the copper-based mineral, and so vice-versa. The host rock in which these formations rest appears to be made of a variety of different minerals, but the most prominent and easily definable of these is cuprite. Its dark gray color and dull metallic luster are easy to see, though it shows no evidence of crystal form. I really wish I knew what that copper-based mineral is!