Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Gemstone of the Week: Pyroxmangite

(Pyroxmangite image found on gemdat.org)

Pyroxmangite is sometimes confused with Rhodonite which is understandable as it is a high-pressure, low-tempurature polymorph of Rhodonite.  It was first described in 1913 and has a hardness of 5.5-6. Pyroxmangite is a pink, rose-pink, purplish-pink, yellowish-red brown, red, or brown gemstone with a triclinic crystal structure.  It may be transparent to translucent and has a vitreous to pearly luster.  Pyroxmangite tends to form as massives that are either granular or a large mass of uniformly indistinguishable crystals. An interesting thing to note about Pyroxmangite is that when heated it becomes magnetic.  Pyroxmangite may be found in: New Zealand, Australia, China, Japan, Italy, Germany, Slovakia, Sweden, Wales, and the states of Michigan, New York, New Jersey, Colorado, New Mexico, Alaska, North Carolina, and California.