Tenorite

tenorite

malachite

cotunnite

cuprite

Images

Formula: CuO
Simple oxide
Specific gravity: 6.4
Hardness: 3½
Streak: Black
Colour: Grey-black
Environments:

Volcanic sublimates
Hydrothermal environments

Tenorite is a secondary copper mineral present to some degree in virtually all oxidised copper deposits. It is also a volcanic sublimate. Associated minerals include cuprite, copper, chrysocolla, malachite, azurite and cotunnite (volcanic sublimates) (HOM).

Localities

At the Girilambone mine, New South Wales, Australia, tenorite occurs in veins cutting chlorite schist, associated with malachite. Elsewhere at the mine cuprite enclosed by tenorite is associated with malachite and azurite in quartz-hematite gossan (AJM 11.2.98).

At Bisbee, Arizona, USA, tenorite is commonly associated with copper nodules (MinRec 43.1 supplement).

Alteration

In the oxidized zone chalcopyrite may be oxidised to yield Cu2+, and this may cause the precipitation of copper oxides such as tenorite:
Cu2+ + H2O → CuO (tenorite) + 2H+

The diagram below is a Pourbaix diagram for Cu-Fe-S-H2O (IJNM 07(02).9.23). It shows the relationship between copper Cu, chalcopyrite CuFeS2, tenorite CuO, covellite CuS, cuprite Cu2O, chalcocite Cu2S, pyrite FeS2 and hematite Fe2O3.

Pourbaix Cu-Fe-S-H<sub>2</sub>O.jpg






















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