Tennantite

Tennantite

[ten-uhn-tahyt]

Tennantite is a copper arsenic sulfosalt mineral. Its chemical formula is Cu12As4S13. It is found in hydrothermal veins and contact metamorphic deposits. It is grey-black, steel-gray, iron-gray or black in color. A closely related mineral, tetrahedrite (Cu12Sb4S13) has antimony substituting for arsenic and the two form a solid solution series. The two have very similar properties and is often difficult to distinguish between tennantite and tetrahedrite. Iron, zinc, and silver substitute up to about 15% for the copper site.

The mineral was named after the English chemist Smithson Tennant (1761-1815).

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