Holtite: A New Mineral Allied to Dumortierite

M. W. Pryce
Government Chemical Laboratories, Perth, Western Australia

Summary: Holtite, a new mineral allied to dumortierite, occurred as pebbles with stibiotantalite and tantalite on an alluvial tin lease near Greenbushes, Western Australia, and is named after the late H. E. Holt, Prime Minister of Australia.

The mineral is orthorhombic with a 11·905 Å, b 20·355 Å, c 4·690 Å, space group Pmcn, weak supercell 2a, 2b, c developed. Crystals are elongated along c, D 3·90 ± 0·02, hardness 8½, fluorescent. Optical properties α 1·743−1·746, mainly yellow, ‖ [001], β 1·756−1·759, colourless, γ 1·758−1·761, colourless, 2Vα 49−55°, r < v. X-ray powder data are given.

Chemical analysis gave SiO2 20·30, Sb2O5 4·61, Al2O3 46·43, Ta2O5 11·24, Nb2O5 0·76, Fe2O3 0·27, MnO 0·05, TiO2 0·09, BeO 0·05, B2O3 1·82, Sb2O3 13·89, H2O+ 0·38, H2O 0·08, sum 99·97%. On a water-free basis the unit cell contains Al24·5Sb2·56‴Ta1·36Sb0·76vNb0·16Fe0·10‴Be0·05Ti0·03Mn0·02B1·40‴Si9·09O66·85. Compared with dumortierite, 4[(A1,Fe)7BSi3O18] or 4 (X11O18), the holtite unit cell contains approximately 4(X10O17).

Type material is preserved at the Government Chemical Laboratories, Perth, Western Australia.

Mineralogical Magazine; March 1971 v. 38; no. 293; p. 21-25; DOI: 10.1180/minmag.1971.038.293.02
© 1971, The Mineralogical Society
Mineralogical Society (www.minersoc.org)