Brianyoungite is a secondary carbonate mineral. The Commission on New Minerals, Nomenclature and Classification (CNMNC) of the International Mineralogical Association (IMA) classifies it as a carbonate groups SO4 also occupy the carbonate CO3 positions, in the ratio of about one sulfate to three carbonates, so other sources give the formula as Zn3(CO3,SO4)(OH)4, and Gaines et al. classify the mineral as a compound carbonate. It is similar in appearance to hydrozincite It was discovered in 1991 and designated IMA1991-053. In 1993 it was named "brianyoungite" after Brian Young (born 1947), a field geologist with the British Geological Survey , who provided the first specimens.