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The Mineral otavite

Pale Yellow Otavite Crystals

Otavite is named after the famous mineral deposit of Tsumeb, in Otavi Province, Namibia. Otavite belongs to the calcite group of minerals, a group of related carbonates that are isomorphous with one another. They are similar in many physical properties, and may partially or fully replace one another, forming a solid solution series. All members of the calcite group crystallize in the trigonal system, and have perfect rhombohedral cleavage.

Chemical Formula

CdCO3

Color

White, yellow-brown, reddish-brown

Crystal System

Hexagonal

Properties

Streak
White
Hardness
3.5 - 4
Transparency
Translucent
Specific Gravity
5.0
Luster
Adamantine to pearly
Cleavage
1,3 - rhombohedral. Cannot be determined.
Fracture
Conchoidal
Tenacity
Brittle

Crystal Habits

Occurs as encrustations of tiny rhombohedral crystals.

Additional Information

Composition
Cadmium carbonate
In Group
Carbonates; Calcite Group
Striking Features
Encrusting crystals, hardness, and crystals
Environment
A secondary mineral found in cadmium deposits and in the oxidation zone.
Rock Type
Metamorphic

Uses

Otavite is a rare mineral and is only of interest to specialized collectors. It is used as a minor ore of the element cadmium when found in cadmium deposits.

Noteworthy Localities

Otavite is a very rare mineral, and its type locality and main occurrence is Tsumeb, Otavi, Namibia. Other localities include Su Elzu, Ozieri, Sardinia, Italy; Broken Hill, New South Wales, Australia; the Blanchard Mine, Bingham, Socorro Co., New Mexico; and the Sterling Hill Mine, Odgensburg, New Jersey.

Common Mineral Associations

Smithsonite, Azurite, Malachite

otavite Photos



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