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Concentric Radial Wavellite

The Mineral wavellite

Wavellite is a classic radiating mineral, forming spectacular pinwheel aggregates emanating from a central core in spherulitic balls. When the balls are complete, the radial structure is internal and not usually visible. A crystal aggregate needs to be fractured to see and appreciate the outstanding radial habit of Wavellite. Wavellite was named in 1805 after William Wavell, an English physician who first discovered this mineral.
Chemical Formula Al3(PO4)2(OH)3 · 5(H2O)
Composition Aluminum phosphate, sometimes with some iron and fluorine
Variable Formula (Al,Fe)3(PO4)2(OH,F)3 · 5(H2O)
Color Light to dark green, yellowish-green, yellow, brown, gray. Rarely white or colorless. May exhibit concentric multicolored zoning in radial cross-sections.
Streak White
Hardness 3.5 - 4
Crystal System Orthorhombic
Crystal Forms
and Aggregates
Single crystals, which are long prismatic and usually striated, are rare. Most often in radial and radiating aggregates, and in rounded, ball-shaped clusters of spherulitic masses. Also botryoidal, stalactitic, and acicular.
Transparency Transparent to opaque
Specific Gravity 2.3 - 2.4
Luster Vitreous, pearly
Cleavage 1,1;2,2
Fracture Uneven
Tenacity Brittle
In Group Phosphates; True Phosphates
Striking Features Crystal aggregate habits and mode of occurrence.
Environment As a secondary mineral in the oxidation zone of low-grade metamorphic rocks, epithermal veins, and in phosphate-rich sedimentary deposits.
Rock Type Sedimentary, Metamorphic
Popularity (1-4) 2
Prevalence (1-3) 2
Demand (1-3) 2

Wavellite AUCTIONS

Wavellite is mainly used as a collectors mineral.

Large and lustrous, cream to yellowish Wavellite comes from the Siglo Veinte Mine, Llallagua, Potosí Department, Bolivia. Good European localities include the Lichtenberg Mine, Ronneburg, Thuringia, Germany; the High Down Quarry, Filleigh, North Devon, England; and the Laharran Quarry, Tracton, Ireland.

The most important occurrences of this mineral are in Arkansas, with several different localities producing the most outstanding forms of Wavellite. The specific localities include Dug Hill, Avant, Garland Co.; Mauldin Mt., Montgomery Co.; Mt. Ida, Montgomery Co.; and Hot Springs, Garland Co.

Large and bright yellow and green Wavellite spheres are found in the National Limestone Quarry, Mount Pleasant Mills, Snyder Co., Pennsylvania; and a deep green form comes from Slate Mountain, El Dorado Co., California.

Quartz, Limonite, Variscite, Crandallite, Muscovite

Prehnite - Occurs in different environments, harder.
Smithsonite - Effervescent in hydrochloric acid, occurs in different environments.

wavellite PHOTOS
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