Sulfides

Sulfides

Found in low-temperatures hydrothermal veins or replacement deposits and in hot spring deposits, this mineral is characterized by its bladed crystals and lead-gray color. The name reflects its antimony content. The Greek name for the mineral was "stibi" from whence came Latin stibium and the old name for the element antimony (Sb).

This mineral can be recognized by its striking resinous luster and perfect cleavage. The red variety is called "ruby blende" or "ruby zinc," while the dark varieties are known as "black jack." It is the most important ore of zinc, which is used in galvanizing iron, making brass paint, wood preservative, and in dyes and medicine. The name comes from the Greek word meaning "treacherous," an allusion to the ease with which dark varieties were mistaken for galena, but yielded no lead.

Discovered in 1845 and named after its discovery locality in Skuterud Mines, Norway, this mineral forms in moderate to high temperature hydrothermal veins. It is an ore of cobalt and nickel. Cobalt is chiefly used in alloys for making permanent magnets and high-speed tool steel.

This mineral is distinguished by its red color, resinous luster, orange-red streak, and its association with orpiment. On long exposure to light, it disintegrates to a reddish-yellow powder. It is found in veins of lead, silver and gold ores, and as a deposit from hot springs. It is used as a pigment. The name is derived from the Arabic Rahj al ghar meaning "powder of the mine."

Found with pentlandite in basic igneous rocks, veins, and metamorphic rocks, this mineral is mined for its associated nickel, copper, and platinum. It is recognized by its massive nature, bronze color, and magnetism. The name comes from the Greek word meaning "reddish."

Nicknamed "Fool's Gold" for people frequently mistaking it for gold, pyrite is the most common sulfide mineral and is found in a wide variety of geological formations. It is often mined for the gold or copper associated with it and is a source of sulfur for sulfuric acid. The name is from a Greek word meaning "fire" for the sparks that flew from it when hit with another mineral or metal.

Discovered in 1856, this mineral was named after J. B. Pentland ( ) who discovered the mineral at Sudbury, Ontario. It is the principal ore of nickel, which is used chiefly in steel. Nickel is also an essential constituent of stainless steel. The mineral is usually found intergrown with pyrrhotite, from which it can be distinguished from because it is non-magnetic.

A rare mineral usually associated with realgar, orpiment is characterized by its yellow color. It was formerly used as pigment, but discontinued due to its arsenic content. Its name comes from the Latin auripigmentum meaning "golden paint," in allusion to its color and because the substance was supposed to contain gold.

This mineral was named from the German nickname for the ore miners called "kupfernickel' (copper nickel); after Old Nick and his mischievous gnomes, because the ore seemed to contain copper but yielded none. It is, however, a minor ore of nickel.

The principal ore of molybdenum, this mineral was named from the Greek word meaning "lead." Currently, this mineral is being researched as a possible replacement semiconductor for silicon transistors in electronic chips. It forms as an accessory mineral in granites and is commonly found in high temperature vein deposits and contact metamorphism.