2.3" Lustrous Ilvaite Crystal Cluster with Quartz - Inner Mongolia

This is a lustrous black ilvaite crystal cluster with small quartz crystals, collected from the Huanggang Fe-Sn Deposit (Huanggang Mines) of Inner Mongolia A. R., China. This location is renowned for producing exceptional ilvaite crystals, this specimen being no exception.

Ilvaite is an iron and calcium sorosilicate that often contains manganese and magnesium impurities. It occurs in magnetite, zinc, and copper ore deposits, along with contact metamorphic deposits and zeolite zones. Ilvaite can be found as lustrous, radiating columnar crystals with striations, though it is typically unearthed in massive forms with indistinguishable crystal structures. It is named after the old Latin name of Elba Island ("Ilva") where it was first described.

An ilvaite deposit was recently discovered in the Huanggang mines of Inner Mongolia, China. These crystals were large, lustrous, and literally redefined the potential quality of ilvaite crystals. This ilvaite specimen from China is a beautiful example of what the Huanggang mines have to offer.

The chemical formula of ilvaite is CaFe3+Fe2+2(Si2O7)O(OH).

The "Huanggang Mine" is a complex of seven somewhat interconnected mines located near Chifeng City, Inner Mongolia, China. Incredible mineral specimens started coming out of this mining complex around 2009. However, the location provided for the specimens was a long ways away from the actual site. This is a practice commonly performed by dealers and miners following a new discovery to try and preserve the mineral site's true location, and/or for political purposes.

As the site's popularity increased, more and more fascinating specimens were popping up on the market. Some of the earlier minerals included world-class ilvaite crystals, pink fluorite octahedrons, hedenbergite-included quartz (many of which were discarded at first), and arsenopyrite. Over the following years, garnets, pink manganoan calcite, gorgeous fluorites, sphalerite, löllingite, borcarite, scheelite, and a variety of other minerals began to surface on the market. To this day, new mineral discoveries are often made in these mines.

A brief description of the mine and minerals from the Huanggang Deposit.
Ilvaite & Quartz
Huanggang Fe-Sn Deposit, Hexigten Banner, Inner Mongolia, China
2.3 x 2.2"