Sulfosalts

Sulfosalts

Part of the Tennantite-Tetrahedrite series, this mineral occurs in hydrothermal veins formed at low to moderate temperatures. It is an ore of copper and silver. The name is derived from the common tetrahedral form of its crystals.

Commonly found in hydrothermal veins formed at low to moderate temperatures, this mineral was named after Smithson Tennant (1761-1815), an English chemist. It was discovered in 1819 at Cornwall, England. It is part of the Tennantite-Tetrahedrite series.

Discovered in 1825 in Cornwall, England, this mineral is named for mineralogist Robert Jameson (1774-1854) of Edinburgh. It is recognized by its characteristic fibrous appearance and is found in ore veins of low to moderate temperatures.

Typically found as dark-grey to black massive material, it is distinguished by its cleavage. It occurs in moderate temperature vein and replacement deposits. Discovered in 1850, its name comes from the Greek meaning "distinct," in allusion to the cleavage. It is an ore of copper.

The minerals that make up the sulfosalt class are those in which a metal is combined with sulfur. There are nearly 100 sulfosalts, but many are rare.

The sulfosalts differ from the sulfides in that sulfides that contain a semi-metal such as antimony, arsenic or bismuth, they substitute in the sulfur positions, but in the sulfosalts they substitute for the metal ions and bond with the sulfurs.