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(From Pakistan. Weight: 0.10 carats in total)
Image © supplied by Woodmansee* Gems

Triplite, also known as triploidite or manganese phosphate, is a rare mineral that has a history dating back to the early 19th century. It was first described by German mineralogist Johann Friedrich Ludwig Hausmann in 1813.

Triplite Occurrence

Triplite can be found in various types of manganese deposits, including hydrothermal veins, contact metamorphic zones, and sedimentary manganese deposits. It is often associated with other manganese minerals such as pyrolusite, rhodonite, and rhodochrosite. Triplite has also been found in association with other minerals such as calcite, quartz, and feldspar.

Triplite Physical Properties

Triplite has a pink, red or brown color and has a vitreous to sub-metallic luster. It is a relatively soft mineral, with a Mohs hardness of 3 to 4. It has a perfect cleavage in one direction and a distinct crystal habit. Triplite is a member of the hexagonal crystal system and typically forms as hexagonal prisms or pseudomorphs after other minerals. The specific gravity of triplite is 3.1 to 3.2, which is slightly above average for non-metallic minerals.

Triplite Use as a Gemstone

Due to its rarity and softness, triplite is not a commonly used gemstone. However, it has been used as a mineral specimen and in some rare cases, it has been used as a decorative stone in jewelry. The pink and red varieties of triplite can be quite attractive, but are not suitable for use in rings or bracelets because of their softness. Some specimens of triplite are used in museums, mineral shows, and as a decorative stone in rock gardens.

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