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Chalcopyrite with Magentite

#RW50121

Chalcopyrite with Magentite

#RW50121
Availability
Sold
Size
9 x 6 x 4 cm - Sm Cabinet 
Formula
Cu1+Fe3+S2 (RRUFF)
Locality
Tyrone mine, Grant Co., New Mexico, United States
Tagged
ore mineral , sulfide , copper

Chalcopyrite is one of the most important and common ores of Copper. It contains about 34% Copper. Like this specimen it exhibits a bright goldish color when fresh and can be iridescent upon long exposure to air.  Chalcoppyrite can alter to Covellite along fractures. Shown together with Pyrite, it is easy to distinguish the two apart. Pyrite will be a lesser gold color. In fact it can be confused with Gold when in small grains in matrix. However a little scratch test with a blade will show that Chalcopyrite is brittle and Gold is malleable. 

This chunk of Copper ore contains about 60% Chalcopyrite and 20-30% Magnetite (glossy black grains). Knowing that the specimen contains Magnetite (with a magnet), gives a clue to the identity of Chalcopyrite since both contain Iron.

Chalcopyrite

Formula
Cu1+Fe3+S2 
Crystal System
Tetragonal 
Crystal Habit
Euhedral Crystals, Striated, Druse 
Cleavage
Indistinct, None, None 
Luster
Metallic 
Color
brass yellow, honey yellow 
Streak
greenish black 
Class
Tetragonal - Scalenohedral 
Fracture
Brittle 
Hardness
3.5 

Data courtesy of Webmineral.

Collection
Robert J. Waidler Collection

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