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The Mineral uvarovite

Uvarovite with Large Crystal

Uvarovite is a rare member of the Garnet group that is consistently deep green in color. Its most widespread habit is as lustrous, tiny, emerald-green crystals densely coating a matrix. Uvarovite is the only true chromium Garnet; other forms of Garnet such as Andradite and Grossular may have a deep green color due to chromium impurities and can sometimes be mistakenly labeled as Uvarovite. Uvarovite was first discovered in 1832 by Germain Henri Hess, who named the new mineral after Count Sergei Semenovitch Uvarov (1765-1855), a Russian statesman and mineral collector.

Chemical Formula

Ca3Cr2Si3O12

Color

Green to emerald-green

Crystal System

Isometric

Properties

Streak
Colorless
Hardness
6.5 - 7
Transparency
Translucent
Specific Gravity
3.7 - 3.8
Luster
Vitreous to adamantine
Cleavage
None
Fracture
Conchoidal to uneven
Tenacity
Brittle

Crystal Habits

Most often in drusy groupings of dodecahedral crystals. Seldom in single crystals. Also in crusty and spiky aggregates of tiny crystals.

3D Crystal Atlas

Additional Information

Composition
Calcium chromium silicate
In Group
Silicates; Nesosilicates; Garnet Group
Striking Features
Color, crystal aggregates, and hardness
Environment
In metamorphic chromium-rich environments, especially Serpentine deposits.
Rock Type
Metamorphic

Other Names

Chrome Garnet Synonym of Uvarovite. May also refer to other green chromium-rich forms of Garnet such as deep emerald-green Demantoid and Grossular.

Uses

Uvarovite crystals are too small to be faceted into gemstones. However, plates of Uvarovite crystals are sometimes polished in cabochons and used as pendants.
Also see the gemstone section on Uvarovite and Garnet.

Uvarovite is also a rare mineral with a very interesting color, and is very well sought by mineral collectors.

Noteworthy Localities

Uvarovite is a rare mineral, and its occurrences are limited. The largest crystals of this mineral come from Outukumpu, Finland, where they come as individual crystals often embedded in a matrix. The most prolific Uvarovite and type locality is the Saranovskii Mine in Sarany, in the Ural Mountains of Russia, where it occurs as small emerald-green crystal grouping often covering a matrix. Small crystals are found in Val Malenco, Lombardy, Italy;  and in the Kop Krom mine, Erzerum, Turkey. In the U.S., Uvarovite occurs in California in Jackson, Amador Co.; Jacksonville, Tuolumne Co.; and near Livermore, Alameda Co.

Common Mineral Associations

Chromite, Olivine, Serpentine, Diopside, Tremolite, Chalcopyrite

Distingushing Similar Minerals

Grossular - Usually in larger crystals, which are paler in color and are less lustrous.
Demantoid - Usually occurs in larger crystals, color not usually as deep emerald-green; otherwise very hard to distinguish.
Dioptase - Softer, occurs in different crystals and environments.
Torbernite and Zeunerite - Softer, occur in different crystals forms and environments.

uvarovite Photos



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