Afghanite, (Na,K)22Ca10 sodium, chloride alumino-silicate. Afghanite is a feldspathoid group and typically occurs with sodalite group minerals. It forms blue to colorless, typically massive crystals in the trigonal crystal system. The lowering of the symmetry from typical (for cancrinite group) hexagonal one is due to ordering of Si and Al. It has a Mohs hardness of 5.5 to 6 and a specific gravity of 2.55 to 2.65. It has refractive index values of nω=1.523 and nε=1.529. It has one direction of perfect cleavage and exhibits conchoidal fracture. a bright orange.
It was discovered in 1968 in the Lapis-lazuli Mine, Sar-e-Sang, Badakhshan Province, Afghanistan and takes its name from that country. It has also been described from localities in Germany, Italy, the Pamir Mountains in Siberia , New York and Newfoundland. It occurs as veinlets in lazurite crystals in the Afghan location and in altered limestone in Pitigliano, Tuscany, Italy.
It is used as a gemstone.