Mineralogy Database

Zircon Mineral Data

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General Zircon Information

Help on Chemical  Formula: Chemical Formula: ZrSiO4
Help on Composition: Composition: Molecular Weight = 190.31 gm
   La,Ce,Pr,Nd,Sm,   3.78 %  RE    4.41 % REE2O3
   Hafnium           4.69 %  Hf    5.53 % HfO2
   Zirconium        43.14 %  Zr   58.27 % ZrO2
   Silicon          14.76 %  Si   31.57 % SiO2
   Oxygen           33.63 %  O
                   ______        ______ 
                   100.00 %       99.79 % = TOTAL OXIDE
Help on Empirical Formula: Empirical Formula: Zr0.9Hf0.05REE0.05SiO4
Help on Environment: Environment: Magmatic, metamorphic, pegmatitic, and alluvial rocks. Zicons are commonly slightly radioactive due to trace amounts of uranium and make prime, geochron age indicators.
Help on IMA Status: IMA Status: Valid Species (Pre-IMA) Prehistoric
Help on Locality: Locality: Laacher See, Niedermendig, Germany. Link to MinDat.org Location Data.
Help on Name Origin: Name Origin: Named from its containing the element, zirconium; which was named from the Persian, zar "gold" and gun = "like" which translates "like gold".
Help on Name Pronunciation: Name Pronunciation: Zircon Say ZIRCON
Help on Synonym: Synonym: Cyrtolite - High U and metamict
  Hyacinth - orange red
  ICSD 71943
  Jarcon - colorless
  Kochelite - mixture of fergusonite-(Y) and zircon
  PDF 6-266

Zircon Image

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Comments: Clear, crystalline zircon prism with pyramidal termination.
Location: Laacher See, Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany. Scale: Not Given.
© Lou Perloff / Photo Atlas of Minerals

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  Perrierite-(Ce)   Pyrochlore   Zircon   Loparite-(Ce)

Comments: Reddish black perrierite crystal, with orange-brown pyrochlore crystal, yellow-brown zircon, and grayish-black loparite.
Location: Buer, Bjorkedalen, Langesundfjord, Telemark, Norway. Scale: See Photo.
© Jeff Weissman / Photographic Guide to Mineral Species

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Comments: Deep red-wine colored, lustrous, internally bright zircon crystals in matrix.
Location: Thorfjord, Seiland, Alta, Norway. Scale: 13 x 10.5 x 9 cm.
© Rob Lavinsky

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Comments: Cathodoluminescence image of earth's oldest-known mineral (zircon grain - W74/2-36) with inset concordia plot showing the 4,404 billion year old region. Note the oscillatory zoning in the outer rim. Image by John W. Valley.
Location: Interlayered red quartzites and metaconglomerates, Jack Hills, Western Australia. Scale: See Image.
© University of Wisconsin

Zircon Crystallography

Help on Axial Ratios: Axial Ratios: a:c = 1:0.90536
Help on Cell Dimensions: Cell Dimensions: a = 6.604, c = 5.979, Z = 4; V = 260.76 Den(Calc)= 4.85
Help on Crystal System: Crystal System: Tetragonal - Ditetragonal Dipyramidal H-M Symbol (4/m 2/m 2/m) Space Group: I 41/amd
Help on X Ray Diffraction: X Ray Diffraction: By Intensity(I/Io): 3.3(1), 2.518(0.45), 4.43(0.45),
Help on Forms: Forms:

Dbl Clk - Start-Stop Rotation
RMB - Cycle Display Modes
Drag1 - Manipulate Crystal
Drag2 - Resize

S - Stereo
I - Indicies
<space> - Start-Stop Rotation
F - Fit to Screen
M - Menu

Help on Above

Forms: ( 3 3 1) ( 1 1 0) ( 1 1 1)

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Physical Properties of Zircon

Help on Cleavage: Cleavage: {110} Indistinct
Help on Color: Color: Brown, Reddish brown, Colorless, Gray, Green.
Help on Density: Density: 4.6 - 4.7, Average = 4.65
Help on Diaphaneity: Diaphaneity: Transparent to translucent to opaque
Help on Fracture: Fracture: Uneven - Flat surfaces (not cleavage) fractured in an uneven pattern.
Help on Habit: Habit: Crystalline - Fine - Occurs as well-formed fine sized crystals.
Help on Habit: Habit: Prismatic - Crystals Shaped like Slender Prisms (e.g. tourmaline).
Help on Habit: Habit: Tabular - Form dimensions are thin in one direction.
Help on Hardness: Hardness: 7.5 - Garnet
Help on Luminescence: Luminescence: Fluorescent, Short UV=yellow,green orange, Long UV=yellow, green orange.
Help on Luster: Luster: Adamantine
Help on Streak: Streak: white

Optical Properties of Zircon

Help on Dichroism (e): Dichroism (e): colorless.
Help on Dichroism (w): Dichroism (w): colorless.
Help on Gladstone-Dale: Gladstone-Dale: CI meas= -0.034 (Excellent) - where the CI = (1-KPDmeas/KC)
CI calc= 0.008 (Superior) - where the CI = (1-KPDcalc/KC)
KPDcalc= 0.1991,KPDmeas= 0.2076,KC= 0.2007
Ncalc = 1.92 - 1.97
Help on Optical Data: Optical Data: Uniaxial (-), e=1.92-1.96, w=1.967-2.015, bire=0.0470-0.0550.

Calculated Properties of Zircon

Help on Electron Density: Electron Density: Bulk Density (Electron Density)=4.52 gm/cc
note: Specific Gravity of Zircon =4.85 gm/cc.
Help on Fermion Index: Fermion Index: Fermion Index = 0.07
Boson Index = 0.93
Help on Photoelectric: Photoelectric: PEZircon = 132.43 barns/electron
U=PEZircon x relectron= 598.38 barns/cc.
Help on Radioactivity: Radioactivity:

GRapi = 3,773.15 (Gamma Ray American Petroleum Institute Units)
Concentration of Zircon per GRapi unit = 265.03 (PPM)

Zircon is Radioactive as defined in 49 CFR 173.403. Greater than 70 Bq / gram.

Estimated Radioactivity from Zircon - mild
Curies (Ci)
If Held in Hand
For One Hour
1000 gm / 7.33 cm 85,050 2.30E-06 3,773.15 1.24
100 gm / 3.40 cm 8,505 2.30E-07 377.31 0.12
10 gm / 1.58 cm 851 2.30E-08 37.73 0.01
1 gm / 7.33 mm 85 2.30E-09 3.77 0.00
0.1 gm / 3.40 mm 9 2.30E-10 0.38 0.00
0.01 gm / 1.58 mm 1 2.30E-11 0.04 0.00
0.001 gm / 0.73 mm 0 2.30E-12 0.00 0.00

Weight of pure Zircon in grams (gm) and Calculated Diameter of a Sphere with a Density of 4.85 gm/cc.*
Goverment Estimate of Average Annual Exposure ( 360 mRem) **
Note: 10 microsieverts/hr = 1 mRem/hr **
Max Permissable Adult Dose 50,000 mRem/yr (hands), 15,000 mRem/yr (eyes)
Lethal Dose LD(50) Exposure 400,000 to 500,000 mRem
Estimated Thorium Activity ( 0.19 % Th) From Sum REE Elements ( 3.78 % REE)

Zircon Classification

Help on  Dana Class: Dana Class: (51)Nesosilicate Insular SiO4 Groups Only
  (51.05)with cations in >[6] coordination
  (51.05.02)Zircon group Zircon ZrSiO4 I 41/amd 4/m 2/m 2/m Hafnon HfSiO4 I 41/amd 4/m 2/m 2/m Thorite ThSiO4 I 41/amd 4/m 2/m 2/m Coffinite U(SiO4)1-x(OH)4x I 41/amd 4/m 2/m 2/m Thorogummite Th(SiO4)1-x(OH)4x I 41/amd 4/m 2/m 2/m IMA2008-035! CeSiO4 I 41/amd 4mm
Help on  Strunz Class: Strunz Class: 09.AD.30 09 - SILICATES (Germanates)
  09.A - Nesosilicates
  09.AD -Nesosilicates without additional anions;
09.AD.30 Coffinite U(SiO4)1-x(OH)4x I 41/amd 4/m 2/m 2/m
09.AD.30 Hafnon HfSiO4 I 41/amd 4/m 2/m 2/m
09.AD.30 Thorite ThSiO4 I 41/amd 4/m 2/m 2/m
09.AD.30 Thorogummite Th(SiO4)1-x(OH)4x I 41/amd 4/m 2/m 2/m
09.AD.30 Zircon ZrSiO4 I 41/amd 4/m 2/m 2/m
09.AD.30 IMA2008-035! CeSiO4 I 41/amd 4mm

Other Zircon Information

Help on References: References: NAME( Emsley91) PHYS. PROP.(Enc. of Minerals,2nd ed.,1990;Dana8) OPTIC PROP.(Heinrich65)
Help on See Also: See Also: Links to other databases for Zircon :
1 - Alkali-Nuts(English)
2 - Alkali-Nuts(Francais)
3 - Am. Min. Crystal Structure Database
4 - Amethyst Galleries' Mineral Gallery
5 - Athena
6 - CalTech Mineral Spectroscopy
7 - EUROmin Project
8 - Ecole des Mines de Paris
9 - Franklin Minerals(Dunn)
10 - Franklin Minerals(Palache)
11 - GeoScienceWorld
12 - Glendale Community College
13 - Google Images
14 - Google Scholar
15 - Handbook of Mineralogy (MinSocAm)
16 - Handbook of Mineralogy (UofA)
17 - HyperPhysics
18 - MinDAT
19 - Mineral and Gemstone Kingdom
20 - Mineralienatlas (Deutsch)
21 - NSDL Reciprocal Net (JAVA)
22 - Online Mineral Museum
23 - Philatelic Mineralogy
24 - QUT Mineral Atlas
25 - Ruff.Info
26 - Scandinavian mineral gallery
27 - Tradeshop.com - The Rainbow of Gems
28 - UCLA - Petrography Thin-Sections
29 - University of Colorado - Mineral Structure Data
30 - University of Texas at Austin

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Dana No: Strunz No: 09.AD.30





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