2" Smithsonite, Aurichalcite and Hemimorphite Association - Utah

This colorful specimen contains an association of colorless hemimorphite crystals, light-green botryoidal smithsonite and blue-green aurichalcite. It was collected from the Hidden Treasure Mine in the Ophir District of Utah, a location that's well known for its zinc and copper mineral deposits.

Smithsonite is known to form in earthy botryoidal masses, sometimes forming grape-like structures. It can be found as a secondary mineral in oxidation zones of zinc ore deposits, in some sedimentary deposits and as an oxidation product of sphalerite. The general chemical formula of smithsonite is ZnCO3, however Fe (iron), Mg (magnesium), Ca (calcium), Cd (cadmium), Cu (copper), and Co (cobalt) can take the place of Zn (zinc). This potential for elemental variation results in smithsonite having the ability to exhibit a wide variety of colors including blue, green, yellow, orange, pink, purple, brown, gray, white and colorless.

Aurichalcite is a secondary mineral that forms in the oxidation zones of copper and zinc ore deposits. It has the chemical formula (Zn,Cu)5(CO3)2(OH)6 and often forms as radiating acicular blue-green crystals and linings along cavity walls.

Hemimorphite is a basic hydrous zinc silicate with the chemical composition Zn4Si2O7(OH)2 · H2O. It earned its name from the structure of which the crystals form, through greek terminology. It has two different terminations on each side of the crystal, hence the inclusion of the greek terms "hemi", meaning half and "morph", meaning shape. The crystal formations can range anywhere between a crystal druze or botryoidal formation, to radiating acicular crystals, and more. The color of these crystals have been found to be white, beige, light brown and blue. On rare occasions, yellow and green crystals have been found.

Prior to 1803, hemimorphite and smithsonite were thought to be the same mineral called "calamine". However, following further scientific research, it was concluded that these were two distinct minerals.

DETAILS
SPECIES
Smithsonite, Aurichalcite & Hemimorphite
LOCATION
Hidden Treasure Mine, Ophir District, Utah
SIZE
2 x 1"
CATEGORY
ITEM
#119531