1.4" Azurite Sun and Malachite on Siltstone - Australia

This is a 1.4" wide, brilliant blue azurite sun on a kaolinitic siltstone/sandstone matrix. It was collected from the Malbunka Copper Mine in the Northern Territory of Australia. There are malachite formations scattered throughout the siltstone as well.

Comes with an acrylic display stand.

Azurite is a deep blue copper-based mineral produced by the oxidation of copper ore deposits. Azurite suns are a unique formation of this mineral only found in a single mine, the Malbunka Copper Mine in Australia. These suns form between layers of a clay mineral called kaolinite (the white matrix the suns are on).

They are thought to have been formed by hydrothermal fluids carrying copper ions through the bedding planes in the rock formation. Carbonate molecules and copper ions in the groundwater nucleated around mineral grains in the kaolinite, which resulted in crystallization of the azurite. Because the azurite was forced to grow in a laterally-compressed and radiating manner along preferred bedding planes, the azurite grew uniformly outward, often producing circular shapes.

Malachite is an intense green copper-based mineral that can be found in a wide variety of forms. Malachite can grow in botryoidal masses, stalactitic formations, and reniform formations, typically as a tight cluster of fanning fibrous needles that make up a seemingly solid mass. As layers continue to stack during formation, a banded pattern can sometimes begin to take shape, which explains the rings in all shades of green that are seen on most polished malachite specimens.

Malachite results from the weathering of other copper ores and is very often found associated with other copper-based minerals such as Azurite and Chrysocolla. It can be found in copper deposits around the world, but the Democratic Republic Of The Congo is the primary source for polished malachite and mineral specimens.

Malachite has been prized since ancient times, first as a utilitarian copper ore, then as an ornamental stone. Due to it's value as a decorative stone, it's rarely mined as a copper ore anymore.
Azurite & Malachite
Malbunka Copper Mine, Utju, Northern Territory, Australia
1.4" Azurite sun on Matrix 3.4 x 3.25"