Bornite

copper

chalcopyrite

Formula: Cu5FeS4
Sulphide, copper mineral
Specific gravity:4.9 to 5.3
Hardness: 3
Streak: Dark grey
Colour: Reddish silver grey on fresh break
Solubility: Moderately soluble in nitric acid
Environments:

Pegmatites
Carbonatites
Metamorphic environments
Hydrothermal environments

Bornite is a widely occurring copper ore usually found associated with chalcocite, chalcopyrite, covellite, pyrrhotite, pyrite and other sulphides, especially in the enriched zone of mesothermal (moderate temperature) and hypothermal (high temperature) veins. It is less frequently found as secondary deposits in the oxidation zone of copper veins. It occurs disseminated in ultramafic rocks, in contact and regional metamorphic deposits and in pegmatites.

At the Judkins quarry, Nuneaton, Warwickshire, England, UK, bornite has been found as a replacement of chalcocite, with chalcopyrite and calcite (RES p323).

Alteration

chalcopyrite CuFeS2 (primary) readily alters to the secondary minerals bornite, covellite and brochantite.

chalcopyrite and chalcocite to bornite
CuFe3+S2 + 2Cu2S = Cu5FeS4
This reaction occurs in the supergene enrichment zone (JRS 18.14).

Common impurities: Ag,Ge,Bi,In,Pb

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