- © 2017 The Mineralogical Society
Boscardinite, ideally TlPb4(Sb7As2)Σ9S18, has been described recently as a new homeotypic derivative of baumhauerite, found at Monte Arsiccio mine, Apuan Alps, Tuscany, Italy. New findings of boscardinite in different mineral associations of this deposit have allowed the collection of new crystal-chemical data. Electron-microprobe analysis of the crystal used for the single-crystal X-ray diffraction study gave (in wt.%): Ag 1.81(5), Tl 12.60(21), Pb 17.99(12), Hg 0.14(5), As 9.36(12), Sb 33.60(27), S 23.41(30), Cl 0.06(1), total 98.97(100). On the basis of ΣMe = 14 apfu, it corresponds to Ag0.42Tl1.52Pb2.14Hg0.02(Sb6.82As3.08)Σ9.90S18.04Cl0.04. With respect to the type specimen, these new findings are characterized by a strong Pb depletion, coupled with higher Tl contents, and a significant As enrichment. The single-crystal X-ray diffraction study of this (Tl,As)-enriched boscardinite confirms the structural features described for the type sample. The unit-cell parameters are a = 8.1017(4), b = 8.6597(4), c = 22.5574(10) Å, α = 90.666(2), β = 97.242(2), γ = 90.850(2)°, V = 1569.63(12) Å3, space group P. The crystal structure was refined down to R1 = 0.0285 on the basis of 6582 reflections with Fo > 4σ(Fo). Arsenic is dominant in three MeS3 sites, compared to one in type boscardinite. The main As-enrichment is observed in the sartorite-type sub-layer. Owing to this chemical peculiarity, (Tl,As)-rich boscardinite shows alternation, along b, of Sb-rich sites and As-rich sites; this feature represents the main factor controlling the 8 Å superstructure. The chemical variability of boscardinite is discussed; the Ag increase observed here gets closer to stoichiometric AgTl3Pb4(Sb14As6)Σ20S36 (Z = 1), against possible extension up to AgTl2Pb6(Sb15As4)Σ19S36 for type boscardinite.