Petersite-(Ce), cu 2+ 6CE(PO4)3(OH)6-3H2O, a new mixite group mineral from yavapai county, Arizona, USA

Shaunna M. Morrison, Kenneth J. Domanik, Hexiong Yang, Robert T. Downs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


A new mineral, petersite-(Ce), ideally Cu2 6Ce(PO4)3(OH)63H2O (IMA2014-002), has been found in the Cherry Creek District of Yavapai County, Arizona, USA. It is a secondary alteration mineral associated with malachite, chlorite, a biotite phase, quartz, albite, orthoclase, hematite, chalcopyrite, and an uncharacterized hisingerite-like mineral. Petersite-(Ce) occurs as sprays of yellowish-green, acicular crystals approximately 20320350 lm in size. It has a white streak with vitreous luster. The mineral is brittle and has a Mohs hardness of ~3.5; no cleavage or parting was observed. The calculated density is 3.424 g/ cm3. An electron microprobe analysis resulted in an empirical chemical formula of Cu6.05(Ce0.18Y0.16La0.12Nd0.09Gd0.03Pr0.02 Dy0.01Sm0.01Ca0.42)R1.04[(PO4)2.54(SiO4)0.14(PO3OH)0.32(OH)6].3.65H2O. Petersite-(Ce) is hexagonal, with space group P63/m and unit-cell parameters a 13.2197(18) A , c 5.8591(9) A , and V 886.8(4) A3, Z = 2. It is the Ce analogue of petersite-(Y) and exhibits the mixite structure type. The mixite group can be expressed by the general formula cu 2+ 6CE(PO4)3(OH)6-3H2O, where nine-coordinated A is a rare earth element, Al, Ca, Pb, or Bi, and T is P or As. The structure of petersite-(Ce) is characterized by chains of edge-sharing CuO5 square-pyramids along c. These chains are connected in the a-b plane by edge-sharing CeO9 polyhedra and corner-sharing PO4 tetrahedra. Hydroxyl groups occupy each corner of the CuO5 polyhedra not shared by a neighboring P or Ce atom. Each CeO9 polyhedron is surrounded by three zeolitic channels. The walls of the channels, parallel to c, are six-membered, hexagonal rings composed of CuO5 and PO4 polyhedra in a ratio of 2:1, respectively, and contain H2O molecules. In our model of petersite-(Ce), we defined one distinct H2O site positioned to form a ring inside the channel, although there are many statistically possible locations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1505-1511
Number of pages7
JournalCanadian Mineralogist
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2016


  • Crystal structure
  • Cu CE(PO)(OH)-3HO
  • Mixite
  • Petersite-(ce)
  • Petersite-(y)
  • Raman spectra
  • X-ray diffraction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geochemistry and Petrology


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