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Formula:   Na(MnCa)2(Si3O8)(OH)   mineral photo

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Crystal:   Triclinic  
Hardness:   4.5  
Spec. Gr.:   3.2-3.4  
Streak:   White  
Cleavage:   Perfect 2 directions near 90°  
Location:   Mt. St. Hilaire, Quebec, Canada  

Serandite is the manganese analog of pectolite, and occurs in various shades of pink to orange. It occurs as large well formed triclinic crystals. It is of great interest to collectors because of its beauty, but has no industrial value. The Demix Quarry at Mont St. Hilaire was opened in 1961 to mine nepheline syenite for use as an aggregate in concrete. In 1962, Frank Melanson, a salesman for a paper products company, discovered beautiful but unfamiliar minerals in the quarry. A number were identified including catapleiite, monteregianite, acmite, synchysite, narsarsukite, and serandite. In 1973, Rolland Bouhelier dug into a pipe-like vug and discovered an incredible array of serandite crystals each studded with snow-white analcime crystals. This specimen in the UCSB Geology Collection is one of the best-known miniature specimens (five by three centimeters).

Bibliography: Bancroft, Peter, Gem and Crystal Treasures, 1984, pg. 142-146.

University of California, Santa Barbara—Department of Earth Science
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