Abstract

The new minerals manganvesuviante and tweddillite, both formed by hydrothermal alteration of primary manganese ores, are described from the Kalahari manganese fields (Republic of South Africa). In addition, single-crystal X-ray structure refinements of both new minerals are presented.

Manganvesuvianite is a tetragonal vesuvianite mineral with the simplified formula Ca19Mn3+(Al,Mn3+,Fe3+)10(Mg,Mn2+)2Si18O69(OH)9, characterized by Mn3+ occupying the five-coordinated position (square pyramid). The crystals have simple prismatic forms: {100}, {110} terminated by {101} and exhibit deep maroon red colour. With polarized light the crystals are strongly pleochroic, yellowish parallel to E and dark red to lilac parallel to O.

Tweddillite is an epidote-group mineral (space group space group P21/m, a = 8.932(5), b = 5.698(4), c = 10.310(5) Å, β = 114.56(4), V = 477.3(8) Å3) with the simplified formula CaSr(Mn3+,Fe3+)2Al [Si3O12](OH), closely related to strontiopiemontite. The difference between strontiopiemontite and tweddillite is the concentration of octahedral Mn3+. Strontiopiemontite has Mn3+ mainly on the M3 site whereas tweddillite has Mn3+ with minor Fe3+ on M3 and M1. Tweddillite forms aggregates of very thin dark red {001} blades characterized by striking pleochroism. The crystals appear dark red parallel to b and orange-yellow parallel to a. Perpendicular to (001) the blades appear magenta to red.

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