Viteite

viteite

hollingworthite

irarsite

tulameenite

Images

Formula: Pd5InAs
Alloy of palladium, indium and arsenic
Specific gravity: 10.78 calculated
Colour: Bright pinkish white in plane-polarized reflected light
Environments

Plutonic igneous environments
Hydrothermal environments

Viteite is a relatively new mineral, approved in 2019 and to date (April 2022) reported only from the type locality.

Localities

The type locality is Borehole 1818, Monchetundra deposit, Monche tundra intrusion, Murmansk Oblast, Russia. Indium is usually present in mineral deposits only as an impurity and rarely forms its own minerals. Viteite is the first reported palladium-indium mineral species. Low-sulphide platinum group element mineralisation is located in sulphide-bearing olivine-pyroxenite, pyroxenite and norite. Rock-forming minerals include orthopyroxene, olivine, plagioclase and augite.
The primary silicates are almost totally replaced by anthophyllite, actinolite, magnesio-hornblende, mica and chlorite. Minor chromite, ilmenite and magnetite also occur.
Disseminated sulphides include pentlandite, pyrrhotite, chalcopyrite, heazlewoodite, violarite, chalcocite, covellite, digenite and galena.
The disseminated sulphides are weathered and oxidised in near-surface conditions and are replaced by secondary magnetite, goethite, and other iron-copper-manganese hydroxides.
Viteite was found in a specimen from a heavy-mineral concentrate made from material obtained from a drill core at a depth of 36.1 m. This specimen represents oxidised ore of a sulphide-bearing orthopyroxenite unit. The core specimen with viteite contains relics of orthopyroxene, augite, plagioclase replaced by anthophyllite, actinolite, magnesio-hornblende, mica, chlorite, baryte, quartz and goethite.
Precious metal minerals in the heavy mineral concentrate from the core specimen are represented by sperrylite, irarsite, hollingworthite, keithconnite, telluropalladinite, telargpalite, lukkulaisvaaraite, tornroosite, bortnikovite, gold-silver alloys, isoferroplatinum, tulameenite, platinum-palladium-iron-copper alloys and oxygenated compounds, and an unidentified mineral with composition Pd3Tl.
Viteite most likely developed under post-magmatic or hydrothermal conditions below about 600oC. It occurs as elongated subhedral grains about 0.5 to 10 microns in size, in association with hollingworthite, irarsite, tulameenite, and platinum-palladium-iron-copper alloys, all embedded in a matrix of chalcocite, goethite and covellite. Tulameenite is replaced by platinum-palladium-iron-copper alloys and oxygenated compounds and viteite is replaced by zvyagintsevite. (CM 58.395-402).

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