Vanadinite Value, Price, and Jewelry Information

By Géry Parent (collection perso.) [see page for license], via Wikimedia Commons

Vanadinite

A faceted vanadinite may be considered a tremendous rarity. Fewer than ten such gems may have been cut. This is unfortunate since the color is rich and beautiful. Arizona crystals tend to be very small, but the ones from Morocco reach a size of several inches.

Vanadinite Information

Data Value
Name Vanadinite
Is a Variety of Apatite
Crystallography Hexagonal. Crystals hexagonal prisms, also tabular, filiform, skeletal.
Refractive Index 2.350-2.416
Colors Red, orange, orange-red, brownish red, pale yellow, yellow, brownish. Rarely colorless; zoned.
Hardness 2.5-3
Fracture Conchoidal
Birefringence 0.066
Cleavage None
Dispersion 0.202
Stone Sizes Faceted gems are extremely rare and always small (less than 1 carat). The material is not normally cut into cabochons because it is almost always in good crystals that are prized by collectors. Potential faceting material would most likely come from Arizona or Morocco.
Luminescence None.
Luminescence Present No
Absorption Spectrum Not diagnostic.
Formula Pb5(VO4)3Cl + P, As.
Pleochroism Very slight, shades of orange and yellow.
Optics e = 2.350; o = 2.416. Uniaxial (-).
Optic Sign Uniaxial -
Luster Resinous to subadamantine.
Specific Gravity 6.88; range 6.5 - 7.1.
Transparency Transparent to opaque.

Streak: White to yellowish.

Occurrence: Secondary mineral in the oxidized zone of ore deposits, especially lead deposits. Arizona (Apache Mine, Mammoth Mine, elsewhere); New Mexico; California; Utah; South Dakota; Colorado.

Chihuahua, Mexico; Algeria; Scotland; Argentina: Tunisia;

USSR; Austria; Sardinia.

Mibladen, Morocco: large red to brown crystals.

Comments: A faceted vanadinite may be considered a tremendous rarity. Fewer than ten such gems may have been cut. This is unfortunate since the color is rich and beautiful. Arizona crystals tend to be very small, but the ones from Morocco reach a size of several inches.

Name: In allusion to the composition.

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