Cobalt Calcite
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Formula:   CaCO3   mineral photo

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Crystal:   Hexagonal  
Hardness:   3  
Spec. Gr.:   2.71  
Streak:   White  
Cleavage:   Rhombohedral  
Location:   Kapata, New Kolwezi, Shaba, Zaire

The Mashamba West mine has produced a whole suite of colorful and well-formed crystallized minerals: carnotite, vasignieite, cuprite, malachite, and cobaltian calcite. Mining is by benched open pits with pumping stations in the sumps. Haulage is by 100 and 150 ton dumpsters. The mine was still operating in 1991. The bright pink cobalt calcite scalenohedron shaped crystals (among the world's best) were found in 1984-85. Many pink calcite crystals associate with bright green tuffs of malachite forming beautiful display specimens.

Bibliography: Lhoest, Joseph. The Mashama West Mine, Shaba, Zaire.

Mineralogical Record, V22, No. 1, pg. 13-20.

University of California, Santa Barbara—Department of Earth Science
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