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On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)
  
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Cesar M. Salvan
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PostPosted: Aug 01, 2014 17:07    Post subject: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

Sometimes, one has the opportunity to analyze specimens that are spectacular representations of rare species. This is the case with the boron minerals from Shijiangshan (Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia, China).

Almost nothing has been published about this skarn type mineralization, related with the famous Huanggang Sn-Fe deposit, but soon some papers will be published on this topic. Now, I want to share one of the interesting mineral species found in Shijianghan: the pentahydroborite, a hydrated calcium borate originally described in the Novofrolovskoye B-Cu skarn-type deposit. The pentahydroborite was found in Shijiangshan forming euhedral crystals of centimeter size, which forms very beautiful specimens. It is interesting, also, the mineral association: unexpected andradite crystals implanted on pentahydroborite, wurtzite and minor galena.

The chemistry of borate is complex. In consequence, several calcium borate minerals have been described. I think that this list will still give beautiful species for a while. Apart from pentahydroborite, the Shijiangshan deposit yields beautiful specimens of other borate minerals. In further actualization, I will complete the description in this thread.



pentahydroborite fov 1,2 cm.jpg
 Description:
Pentahydroborite
Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
FOV 1.2 cm
 Viewed:  16149 Time(s)

pentahydroborite fov 1,2 cm.jpg



andradite pentahydrob.jpg
 Description:
Andradite
Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
FOV 0.5 cm
Garnet crystals are commonly found implanted on Pentahydroborite. At a first glance (and giving the occurrence of grains and crystals of other metallic minerals) I thought they are Sphalerite, but analysis revealed its nature.
 Viewed:  16124 Time(s)

andradite pentahydrob.jpg



wurtzite.jpg
 Description:
Wurtzite
Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
FOV 0.3 cm
The high temperature hexagonal polymorph of Sphalerite, here crystallized on Pentahydroborite
 Viewed:  16133 Time(s)

wurtzite.jpg



pentahydroborite.jpg
 Description:
Pentahydroborite
Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
FOV 0.9 cm
Note the Wurtzite crystal groups backwards.
 Viewed:  16260 Time(s)

pentahydroborite.jpg


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PostPosted: Aug 02, 2014 12:09    Post subject: Re: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

Interesting stuff...looks like we might expect to see a lot of the species known from Fuka, Charcas and the Bor Pit at Dalnegorsk
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PostPosted: Aug 04, 2014 06:06    Post subject: Re: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

Cesar M. Salvan wrote:
....Almost nothing has been published about this skarn type mineralization, related with the famous Huanggang Sn-Fe deposit, but soon some papers will be published on this topic...

I just received the excellent (as usual) publication of the classic Lapis magazine with already 3 pages article about Shijiangshan and its unusual Borates: Don't miss it, it is the number 7-8 July-August 2014 and contains some other very fine articles...



Lapis - Panasqueira and Chinese Borates.jpg.jpg
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 Viewed:  15806 Time(s)

Lapis - Panasqueira and Chinese Borates.jpg.jpg


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PostPosted: Aug 04, 2014 21:50    Post subject: Re: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

Jordi Fabre wrote:
.....and contains some other very fine articles...


By the way, this issue has the main theme "Panasqueira". Jordi is one of the excellent authors...

Martin

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PostPosted: Aug 05, 2014 02:52    Post subject: Re: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

Cannot seem to remember - Is Mineralien Magazin Lapis 100% in German language?
Gérard
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PostPosted: May 25, 2015 11:26    Post subject: Re: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

I want to complete this thread on the very good borate minerals from this locality. Possibly one of the most significant finds there are the extraordinary crystals of the rare mineral Olshanskyite.

The Olshanskyite is one of the long list of calcium borate minerals. It has been described from samples from the Titovskoe B deposit, Sakha Republic, Russia where it forms small veins and crystalline masses. It has also been found in the skarns of Fuka (Okayama, Japan), where it forms centimeter-size crystalline masses.

The extraordinary crystals of Olshanskyite we studied from Shijiangshan ranged from millimeters to 4 centimeters, are well formed, and transparent, resembling ice, to white.

Before it entered the market, and due to the exceptional size and shape for the species, a friend sent me some samples to verify the species. As usual, we used a non-destructive approach first and Raman spectroscopy is an ideal technique for the identification of this type of borate species, as it is reliable and ultra-fast.

The surprise came when we found that the Raman spectrum did not match with the data published by RRUFF project and Frost et al. (2013), DOI 10.1007/s13146-013-0162-5, and does not correspond with any sample of our database or any published Raman spectrum of described calcium borates. A new mineral? Well, before conclude that, the samples demanded more tests.

We performed XRD and studied the thermal behavior of the beautiful crystals from this locality and both techniques shows exactly the same results published for the type locality and the Olshanskyite from Fuka.
Hence we can conclude that the beautiful crystals from Shijiangshan are the same phase, described as Olshanskyite previously.

The Raman observations and the erroneous data published in both references suggested that a new, undescribed phase, is in circulation in the mineral market labelled as Olshanskyite.
We tried to find it, but all “olshanskyite” we located in particular collections were actually not olshanskyite, neither the undescribed phase used by RRUFF and Frost et al. in their descriptions. Instead, all were other described calcium borates, as hexahydroborite, nifontovite and others.

This is not surprising, because usually some dealers put in the market insufficiently characterized minerals (or simply they label what they "believe" or what they expect will give them more profit). The problem of selling rare species identified "de visu" or without any professionalism is that the collections are filled with incorrectly labelled samples. This forces us to make a great effort performing a previous characterization when we need a mineral sample for a scientific study. This is the problem with the cited paper of Ray Frost et al.: they performed the vibrational spectroscopy study of an (incorrectly) labelled Olshanskyite, trusting the original collection and without further characterization.
This remarks the key roles of the professionalism of the curator of a collection, no matter the size or purpose of the collection, and the risk of relying on the seller of a rare mineral. I recommend to those who own a supposed Olshanskyite to check it out. I could perform it for free.

Apart, I give here a clue for those interested in the hunting of undescribed minerals: it is likely that one of the minerals used to obtain the incorrect Olshanskyite Raman spectra published by RRUFF and by Frost et al. (both are different) are a new, undescribed mineral. Happy hunting.



olshanskyite 3.jpg
 Mineral: Olshanskyite
 Locality:
Shijiangshan Mine, Linxi, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
 Dimensions: FOV 1.5 cm
 Description:
 Viewed:  14112 Time(s)

olshanskyite 3.jpg



olshanskyite 2 reducida.jpg
 Mineral: Olshanskyite
 Locality:
Shijiangshan Mine, Linxi, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
 Dimensions: FOV 1.5 cm
 Description:
 Viewed:  14157 Time(s)

olshanskyite 2 reducida.jpg



olshanskyite.jpg
 Mineral: Olshanskyite
 Locality:
Shijiangshan Mine, Linxi, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
 Dimensions: FOV 1.5 cm
 Description:
 Viewed:  14157 Time(s)

olshanskyite.jpg



erroneous rruff.jpg
 Description:
Screen capture of the wrong Raman spectrum published by RRUFF, a collection of crappy and sometimes erroneous Raman spectra.
 Viewed:  14134 Time(s)

erroneous rruff.jpg


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PostPosted: Jun 03, 2015 05:02    Post subject: Re: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

To complete my previous discussion, I share here the analysis of the extraordinary Olshanskyite crystals from Shijiangshan.

I'm still looking for additional olshanskyite samples from other locations, in order to identify the origin of the wrong rruff spectrum.



olshanskyite xrd.jpg
 Description:
 Viewed:  13795 Time(s)

olshanskyite xrd.jpg



olshanskyite 4.jpg
 Mineral: Olshanskyite
 Locality:
Shijiangshan Mine, Linxi, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
 Dimensions: FOV 1.5 cm
 Description:
 Viewed:  13805 Time(s)

olshanskyite 4.jpg


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PostPosted: Jul 01, 2015 20:25    Post subject: Re: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

Completing this thread on the description of the minerals from the Shijiangshan deposit with the (possible, and logical, taking into account the mineralogy) finding of Cuspidine. What we found in several samples are groups of white to clear and transparent crystals ranging from milimetre to 0.5 cm size of a sodium silicate mineral. In first instance the mineral is easily confused by borates. Forms disorganized to sub-parallel groups of crystals. In the samples observed, the crystals are pretty fractured or cleaved, but are good crystals for the species.

The habit is not the expected for the Cuspidine crystals (characteristic spearhead-shaped crystals) and I only could perform the Raman spectroscopy analysis, which match with Cuspidine. Therefore I considered the identification as possible and more samples should be analysed, although is likely a common mineral in the deposit.

Other minerals found are: Hulsite, forming small masses and tabular black, submetallic crystals (requires additional confirmation). An unidentified iron and manganese oxide, copper sulfide (possible chalcocite), galena and arsenopyrite. The clinochlore is common, forming green crystalline crusts.



andradite cuspidine.jpg
 Mineral: Andradite and Cuspidine
 Locality:
Shijiangshan Mine, Linxi, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
 Dimensions: FOV 0.9 cm
 Description:
Andradite garnet and cuspidine accompanied by an unidentified oxide
 Viewed:  13350 Time(s)

andradite cuspidine.jpg



cuspidine2.jpg
 Mineral: Cuspidine
 Locality:
Shijiangshan Mine, Linxi, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
 Dimensions: FOV 1 cm
 Description:
 Viewed:  13368 Time(s)

cuspidine2.jpg



Hulsite.jpg
 Mineral: Hulsite
 Locality:
Shijiangshan Mine, Linxi, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
 Dimensions: FOV 2.5 mm
 Description:
Possible hulsite (data obtained only by Raman spectroscopy)
 Viewed:  13348 Time(s)

Hulsite.jpg



cuspidine raman.jpg
 Locality:
Shijiangshan Mine, Linxi, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
 Description:
Analysis of cuspidine (blue line) against authentic sample (black line)
 Viewed:  13353 Time(s)

cuspidine raman.jpg


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PostPosted: Jul 02, 2015 04:53    Post subject: Re: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

These new analyses are very interesting because in the past Cupidines (some analyzed) were offered by some dealers from "Huanggang Mines." This fact together with the fact that to my knowledge, in general borates are not really common in the Huanggang mines, it reopens doubts about the Borcarites, Cahnites (and now Cuspidines) attributed to Huanggang, but seem to match quite well the Shijiangshan mine (which is relatively close to the Huanggang Mines) as well as the Shalonggou Mine, located just 1.7 Km from the Shijiangshan Mine (Ottens, B. & Bin, J. (2014): Seltene Boratmineralien aus der Inneren Mongolei, China. Lapis, 39 (7/8), 66-68)

The future will tell, but after all these traces it seems reasonable to suppose that maybe these three species (Borcarite, Cahnite, Cuspidine) could well be from the Shijiangshan Mine and/or the Shalonggou Mine instead the Huanggang Mines...
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PostPosted: Jul 03, 2015 12:43    Post subject: Re: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

What I noticed is how difficult it is to obtain feedback on the findings presentedd here. It's as if supposedly well informed people have very little to say and even less willingness to make such an effort. We show here some mineralogical findings that implied some amount of technical effort and good knowledge and left this open to questions and even criticism to some collectives and projects.
Given that this is a forum, i.e., a place to discuss and share ideas, what one expects is to discuss or, at least, to receive some feedback (in the sense of questions, corrections, additions and comments, not in the sense of admiration for the nice pictures or something). The sole exposition of images and results makes the effort of contributing to a forum unrewarding, especially when compared with articles and papers. Why is it so difficult (and I include myself) to exchange ideas and find collaboration? Is it simply because we are too busy with our own stuff that we have no time to see what others do?.
In spite of the data and images we have, I think it is not worth to continue to deepen this thread, and it is better to gather all the stuff and prepare a well structured article.
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PostPosted: Jul 03, 2015 13:23    Post subject: Re: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

Cesar M. Salvan wrote:
What I noticed is how difficult is to obtain feedback to the findings exposed here. It's as if supposedly well informed people have very little to say and even less willingness to make such an effort. We show here some mineralogical findings that implied some amount of technical effort and good knowledge and left open questions and even criticisms to some collectives and projects.
Given that this is a forum, i.e., a place to discuss and share ideas, what one expect is to discuss or, at least, to receive some feedback (in the sense of questions, corrections, additions and comments, not in the sense of admiration for the nice pictures or something). The solely exposition of images and results make unrewarding the effort of contribute to a forum, specially when compared with articles and papers. Why is so difficult (and I include myself) the exchange of ideas and the finding of collaborations? Is simply because we are too busy with our own stuff that we have not time to see what others do?.
In spite of the data and images we have, I think is not worth to continue deepen in this thread and is better to gather all the stuff and prepare a well structured article.


Cesar,
I have found this thread to be very informative, and in fact, it convinced me to acquire one of the Olshanskyite specimens from this area. With the exception of the prior, now suspect, Olshanskyite analyses, I didn't realize there was much to discuss. I think your description of the results combined with the spectra provided were convincing. I want to thank you for your efforts in exploring the unusual mineralogy of this area. As I have no access to a lab, and no other samples that I can provide to help the effort, I cannot really add more to the discussion. But, again, I appreciate all your hard work, and have very much enjoyed reading about your results. I hope you publish more information.
Bob
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PostPosted: Nov 29, 2017 20:39    Post subject: Re: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

Hi Cesar, I hope this finds you well.

I was wondering if, now that a lot more has been found this year any more work has been done, and more information available?

This is one of my pieces:
https://www.mindat.org/photo-857285.html and so is this:
https://www.mindat.org/photo-855567.html

Both collected 2017

Kind regards,
Ed
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PostPosted: Dec 03, 2017 21:09    Post subject: Re: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

Hi Ed,

Indeed, this interesting deposit keep yielding nice specimens of rare species and also good specimens of not so rare species. For example, it recently have been found beautiful octahedral magnetite, good size (several cm) crystals, with intense black color and luster, and grainy surfaces.

We confirmed also some specimens of roweite. It is interesting the specimen you showed of roweite with johnbaumite. I never show such association in the specimens we studied so far. Also, it is interesting this occurrence of an arsenate in good crystals with the borate. I saw similar specimens with cuspidine. Do you have analytic confirmation of the johnbaumite? If so, it is an interesting addition to the paragenesis of this deposit.



magnetite shijjianshan.jpg
 Mineral: Magnetite
 Locality:
Shijiangshan Mine, Linxi, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
 Dimensions: FOV 1.3 cm
 Description:
 Viewed:  4310 Time(s)

magnetite shijjianshan.jpg


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PostPosted: Dec 04, 2017 17:07    Post subject: Re: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

Thanks Cesar, we also suspected Magnetite as the crystal shapes are so distinctive and a compass showed movement.

We have not done any analysis yet but I a working with someone who is preparing the samples and making the appointments with a lab. I have it on good authority though that the Johnbaumite was confirmed in Russia.

This is a very exciting find and I am sure much more to discover,

Kind regards,
Ed
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PostPosted: Dec 04, 2017 17:11    Post subject: Re: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

A close up of some interesting area


Close up big piece bb.jpg
 Mineral: Cahnite
 Locality:
Shijiangshan Mine, Linxi, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
 Dimensions: 4cm
 Description:
Species to be confirmed
 Viewed:  4192 Time(s)

Close up big piece bb.jpg


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PostPosted: May 27, 2018 19:33    Post subject: Re: On the mineralogy of Shijiangshan, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R. (China)  

Completing this thread on this interesting mine. Beautiful johnbaumite specimens. In those crystals it is notorious that johnbaumite is the arsenic analog of hydroxylapatite.
A shout-out to Ed Richard and David Vince, who provided specimens for study.



johnbaumite olshanskyite 2 fov 9 mm.jpg
 Mineral: Johnbaumite and Olshanskyite
 Locality:
Shijiangshan Mine, Linxi, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
 Dimensions: FOV 9 mm
 Description:
 Viewed:  935 Time(s)

johnbaumite olshanskyite 2 fov 9 mm.jpg



johnbaumite.jpg
 Mineral: Johnbaumite
 Locality:
Shijiangshan Mine, Linxi, Ulanhad League, Inner Mongolia A.R., China
 Dimensions: FOV 1.2 cm
 Description:
Crystals on clinochlore.
 Viewed:  937 Time(s)

johnbaumite.jpg


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