Morphology and Alteration of Asbestiform Grunerite and Anthophyllite

B. A. Cressey, E. J. W. Whittaker and J. L. Hutchison
Department of Geology and Mineralogy, University of Oxford, Parks Road, Oxford
Department of Metallurgy and Science of Materials, University of Oxford, Parks Road, Oxford

Abstract: Sections perpendicular to [001] of ionthinned specimens of amosite (fibrous grunerite) from Penge, Transvaal and anthophyllite from Paakila, Finland and Söndeled, Norway, have been examined by high-resolution transmission electron microscopy. Observations on the nature of grain boundaries and alteration are compared with those of other workers on other fibrous amphiboles. Fibrous crystals grow with their fibre (c) axes approximately parallel to one another but they have considerable rotational disorder about that axis. Grain boundaries are generally irregular in shape and only follow low-index planes for short sections. In all specimens the amphibole has undergone some alteration to sheet silicates along grain boundaries, fractures, cleavages, and multiple-chain lamellae. Anthophyllite alteration products are talc, serpentine and chlorite, and amosite alteration products approximate to iron analogues of talc and serpentine. Talc layers are generally planar and their orientation is strongly controlled by the amphibole structure, whereas serpentine and chlorite layers often curve and their orientations are less frequently related to that of the amphibole. Comparison of specimens which appear finely fibrous in hand specimen with those which appear coarser, acicular or massive suggests that the nature of fibres produced by crushing is mainly controlled by the grain boundaries in the former type, but other factors such as fractures, cleavages, and defects are more important for the latter types.

Mineralogical Magazine; March 1982 v. 46; no. 338; p. 77-87; DOI: 10.1180/minmag.1982.046.338.13
© 1982, The Mineralogical Society
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