Formula: CaFe3+Fe2+2O(Si2O7)(OH)
Sorosilicate, lawsonite group
Crystal System: Orthorhombic
Specific gravity: 3.99 to 4.05 measured, 4.064 calculated
Hardness: 5½ to 6
Streak: Black, inclining to green or brown
Colour: Iron-black, dark grayish black
Solubility: Gelatinises with hydrochloric acid
Common impurities: Mg,Mn

Plutonic igneous environments
Metamorphic environments
Hydrothermal environments

Ilvaite is a rare sorosilicate primarily found in iron-rich metamorphosed limestone and dolostone or zinc and copper deposits; less commonly it is found as a minor mineral in mafic and ultramafic rocks either as a late-stage primary mineral or as the result of hydrothermal alteration (Mines & Minerals 25.39). It also occurs in sodalite - syenite and in zeolites (Webmin, Dana). Associated minerals include quartz, magnetite, hedenbergite, sphalerite and fluorite (HOM).


The Two Mile and Three Mile deposits, Paddy's River, Paddys River District, Australian Capital Territory, Australia, are skarn deposits at the contact between granodiorite and volcanic rocks. Ilvaite is a primary silicate that occurs rarely with quartz, magnetite, andradite and nontronite at the Two Mile deposit (AJM 22.1.35).

At Fengjiashan, Hubei, China, ilvaite occurs on quartz or calcite (MinRec 38.1.37).

In the Deccan traps of India, ilvaite is found only in the basalt of the Kurar quarry, Bombay-Malad, growing on quartz and second-generation calcite, but even there it is infrequent. It is associated with quartz, calcite, hematite, pumpellyite and rarely andradite, but never with babingtonite or julgoldite (MinRec 34.1.50).

At the type locality, Torre di Rio - Santa Filomena area, Elba Island, Italy, ilvaite occurs as aggregates with pyroxene and dolomite (Dana).

At the Los Remedios mine, Taxco mining district, Mexico, ilvaite has been found with overgrowths of rhodochrosite and fluorite (MinRec 42.5.430).

At Dalnegorsk, Russia, hedenbergite pseudomorphs after ilvaite have been found (KL p229).

At Whin Sill, Teesdale, England, UK, ilvaite has been found in mafic-pegmatite veinlets, associated with ilmenite, titanite and apatite. The ilmenite may form pseudomorphs after titaniferous magnetite. The ilvaite encloses small grains of zircon, rutile, pyrrhotite, chalcopyrite and sphalerite (M&M 25.39).

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