Minerals identify

Know how to recognize them

Samarskite-(Y)

Oxide mineral

Samarskite is a radioactive rare earth mineral series which includes samarskite-(Y) with formula: (Y and samarskite-(Yb) with formula (Yb The formula for samarskite-(Y) is also given as: (Y,Fe3+,U)(Nb,Ta)O4.

Samarskite crystallizes in the orthorhombic - dipyramidal class as black to yellowish brown stubby prisms although it is typically found as anhedral masses. Specimens with a high uranium content are typically metamict and appear coated with a yellow brown earthy rind.

Samarskite occurs in rare earth bearing granite pegmatites with other rare minerals. It occurs in association with columbite, uraninite, albite, muscovite

Samarskite was first described in 1847 for an occurrence in Miass , Ilmen Mountains, Southern Ural Mountains of Russia The chemical element samarium was first isolated from a specimen of samarskite in 1879. Samarium was named after samarskite which was named for the Russian mine official, Colonel Vasili Samarsky-Bykhovets (1803–1870).

Samarskite-(Yb) was first described in 2004 for an occurrence in the South Platte Pegmatite District, Jefferson County, Colorado

Identification

Color of mineral

Black
Brown
Yellow

Mohs scale ( mineral hardness )

5

The streak

Brown

Density ( specific gravity )

2.1

Luster ( interacts light )

Resinous
Vitreous

Crystal ( diaphaneity )

Orthorhombic

Radioactive

Radioactive