minerals

devilline

posnjakite

ktenasite

Serpierite

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Formula: Ca(Cu,Zn)4(SO4)2(OH)6.3H2O
Hydrated sulphate containing hydroxyl, devilline group
Specific gravity: 3.07
Hardness: 2
Streak: White or pale blue
Colour: Dark sky-blue to medium sky-blue; greenish blue in transmitted light.
Solubility: Readily soluble in acids
Environments:

Hydrothermal environments

Serpierite is a secondary mineral in the oxidised zone of copper-zinc bearing hydrothermal mineral deposits, commonly a post-mine product. Associated minerals include smithsonite, devilline, posnjakite, ktenasite, linarite, langite, brochantite, wroewolfeite, namuwite, schulenbergite, hydrozincite, malachite and gypsum (HOM). It is found in altered smelter slags and oxidised sulphide veins (Webmin).

Localities

At Kintore, Broken Hill, Yancowinna county, New South Wales, Australia, serpierite occurs commonly with schulenbergite and brochantite, and less commonly with antlerite, ktenasite and linarite. The host rock is often quartz containing patches of sphalerite, cuprite or native copper, but serpierite has also been found on fractures in gneiss (AJM 3.1.44-45).

At the Wheal Fortune mine, Northampton, Northampton Shire, Western Australia, serpierite forms crusts on specimens in association with brochantite and hydrozincite (AJM 18.1.45).

At Neudorf, Harzgerode mining district, Harz, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany, serpierite occurs on the dumps overgrown by gypsum and aragonite (Minrec 43.1.41).

At the type Locality, the Kamariza mines, Agios Konstantinos, Lavrion Mining District, Lavreotiki, East Attica, Attica, Greece, serpierite is a secondary mineral in the oxidised zone of copper-zinc bearing hydrothermal mineral deposits, associated with smithsonite (Mindat, Dana).

At Akchagyl, Kazakhstan, serpierite has been found with linarite and cyanotrichite (Dana ).

At Red Gill Mine, Roughton Gill, Caldbeck, Allerdale, Cumbria, England, UK, serpierite is extremely rare, but it has been found as micaceous aggregates on cerussite, identified by XRD. It is probably a dump formed mineral (JRS 11.42).

At the Roughton Gill Mine, Roughton Gill, Caldbeck, Allerdale, Cumbria, England, UK, serpierite is very rare, but has been found as small radiating sprays of crystals up to 1 mm long, formed in cavities and on fractures in quartz, chalcopyrite and sphalerite with associated hemimorphite and smithsonite (JRS 14.18).

At the Tynebottom mine, Alston Moor, Eden, Cumbria, England, UK, serpierite and devilline are usually highly intergrown and difficult to separate. The minerals occur in about 30% of the copper zone patches, sometimes surrounded by brochantite (JRS 10.6).

At Brownley Hill mine, Alston Moor, Eden, Cumbria, England, UK, serpierite occurs with harmotome, gypsum and rarely with brochantite in fractures in the quartz lining of a large cavity. The crystals appear to have been produced by post-mining oxidation of chalcopyrite (Minrec 31.3.247).

At the Gallagher and Manila mining claims, near Tombstone, Cochise County, Arizona, USA, serpierite occurs sparingly associated with brochantite and gypsum on the mine dumps. It is also seen with malachite and smithsonite, possibly as a postmining alteration product (R&M 90-4.345).

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