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Simmonsite, Na2LiAlF6, a new mineral of pegmatitic-hydrothermal origin, occurs in a late-stage breccia pipe structure that cuts the Zapot amazonite-topaz-zinnvvaldite pegmatite located in the Gillis Range, Mineral Co., Nevada, U.S.A. The mineral is intimately intergrown with cryolite, cryolithionite and trace elpasolite. A secondary assemblage of other alumino-fluoride minerals and a second generation of cryolithionite has formed from the primary assemblage. The mineral is monoclinic, P21 or P21/m, a = 7.5006(6) A??, b = 7.474(1) A??, c = 7.503(1) A??, ??= 90.847(9) ??, V=420.6(1) A??3, Z = 4. The four strongest diffraction maxima [d(A??), likl, I/I100] are (4.33, 111 and 111, 100); (1.877, 400 and 004, 90); (2.25, 13T, 113, 131 and 311, 70); and (2.65, 220, 202, 022, 60). Simmonsite is pale buff cream with white streak, somewhat greasy, translucent to transparent, Mohs hardness of 2.5-3, no distinct cleavage, subconchoidal fracture, no parting, not extremely brittle, Dm is 3.05(2) g/cm3, and Dc is 3.06(1) g/cm3. The mineral is biaxial, very nearly Isotropie, N is 1.359(1) for ?? = 589 nm, and birefringence is 0.0009. Electron microprobe analyses gave (wt%) Na = 23.4, Al = 13.9, F = 58.6, Li = 3.56 (calculated), with a total of 99.46. The empirical formula (based on 6 F atoms) is Na1.98Li1.00 ooAl|ooF6. The crystal structure was not solved, presumably because of unit-cell scale twinning, but similarities to the perovskite-type structure exist. The mineral is named for William B. Simmons, Professor of Mineralogy and Petrology, University of New Orleans, New Orleans.
Additional Publication Details
Simmonsite, Na2LiAlF6, a new mineral from the Zapot amazonite-topazzinnwaldite pegmatite, Hawthorne, Nevada, U.S.A