Original paper

Écrinsite, AgTl3Pb4As11Sb9S36, a new thallium-rich homeotype of baumhauerite from the Jas Roux sulphosalt deposit, Parc national des Écrins, Hautes-Alpes, France

Topa, Dan; Kolitsch, Uwe; Makovicky, Emil; Stanley, Chris

European Journal of Mineralogy Volume 29 Number 4 (2017), p. 689 - 700

published: Sep 1, 2017

DOI: 10.1127/ejm/2017/0029-2639

BibTeX file

ArtNo. ESP147052904014, Price: 29.00 €

Download preview PDF Buy as PDF


Écrinsite, ideally AgTl3 Pb4 As11 Sb9 S36, is a new thallium sulphosalt species found in the Jas Roux As–Sb–Pb–Tl–Hg–Ag deposit, Parc national des Écrins, Département des Hautes-Alpes, France. Associated minerals in four different samples are jasrouxite, stibnite, smithite, guettardite, chabournéite, pierrotite and As-bearing zinkenite. Écrinsite is opaque with metallic lustre. It is brittle without any discernible cleavage and with conchoidal fracture. In reflected light écrinsite is white, pleochroism is not discernible. Internal reflections are absent. In crossed polarisers, anisotropism is distinct, with rotation tints in shades of grey. The reflectance data (%, air) are: 37.3, 38.6 at 470 nm, 35.2, 36.7 at 546 nm, 34.0, 35.5 at 589 nm and 32.0, 33.3 at 650 nm. Mohs hardness is 3–3½, microhardness VHN25 is in the range 175–201, with a mean value of 189 kg mm-2. Average results of 20 electron-microprobe analyses for the structurally investigated grain are (in wt%): Ag 2.03(10), Cu 0.02(1), Tl 14.57(20), Pb 16.23(32), Sb 23.97(25), As 17.87(17), S 25.20(15), total 99.88 (15), corresponding to Ag0.87 Cu0.02 Tl3.28 Pb3.61 Sb9.06 As10.98 S36.19 (on the basis of 28 Me + 36S = 64 apfu). The simplified formula, AgTl3 Pb4 Sb9 As11 S36, is in accordance with the results of the crystal-structure analysis and may be derived from the ideal baumhauerite formula, Pb12 As16 S36, by substitution of Sb for As and [(Tl, Ag)+ + (As, Sb)3+]↔2Pb2+. The density, 4.96 g cm-3, was calculated using the ideal formula. Écrinsite has a triclinic cell, space group P 1, with a = 8.080(2), b = 8.533(2), c = 22.613(4) Å, α = 90.23(3)°, β = 97.17 (3)°, γ = 90.83(3)°, V = 1546.7(6)Å3, and Z = 1. The strongest five lines in the (calculated) powder-diffraction pattern are [d in A(I)(h k l)]: 4.14 (68)(1 0 5), 3.72(92)(1 0 5), 3.56(100)(1 0 6)3.53(80)(1 2 2) and 3.48(72)(1 2 2). Écrinsite is a new member of the sartorite homologous series with N 1,2 = 3, 4, i. e., N = 3.5. Four other members share the same N value as écrinsite: baumhauerite, argentobaumhauerite, boscardinite and bernarlottiite. By comparison to the closely related boscardinite (ideally Tl2 Pb8 Sb14 As4 S36), écrinsite is characterised by both an excess of As over Sb and a distinctly higher substitution of [(Tl, Ag)+ + (As, Sb)3+]↔ 2Pb2+ . Baumhauerite and bernarlottiite are basically unsubstituted members, whereas argentobaumhauerite has a Ag substitution, without Tl.


new mineralfrancesartorite homologous seriesthalliumsulphosaltécrinsitenational des écrinsparccrystal structurejas roux deposit