Editorial Feature

Raspite - Occurrence, Properties, and Distribution

Raspite, a member of the Scheelite group, was first discovered in 1897 at Broken Hill, New South Wales, Australia. The mineral was named after Charles Rasp, German-Australian prospector, discoverer of the Broken Hill ore deposit.

Properties of Raspite

The following are the key properties of Raspite:

  • Cell Data
    • Space Group: P21/a
    • a = 13.555(11)
    • b = 4.976(2)
    • c = 5.561(3)
    • β = 107.63(7)°
    • Z = 4
  • Crystal Data
    • Monoclinic
    • Point Group: 2/m
    • Crystals are typically flattened on {100}, elongated along [010] or [100], may be flat tabular on {101}; prominent forms are {100}, {011}, {001}, {010}, several others modifying, to 1.3 cm. Twinning: On {100}, common as interpenetration twins; also on {102}
    • X-ray Powder Pattern: 3.224 (100), 2.760 (60), 3.619 (55), 2.705 (55), 1.812 (25), 3.593 (20), 3.478 (20)
  • Chemical Composition
    Elements Content 1 Content 2
    PbO 49.06 49.05
    WO3 48.32 50.95
    rem. 1.43 -
    Total 98.81 100.00
  • Optical Properties
    • Optical Class: Biaxial (+)
    • Orientation: Y = b; Z ^ c ˜30°
    • α = 2.27(2)
    • β = 2.27(2)
    • γ = 2.30(2)
    • 2V(meas.) = ?0°
  • Estimated Properties
    Electron density Bulk density (electron density)=6.99 g/cm3
    note: Specific gravity of Raspite =8.47 g/cm3
    Photoelectric PERaspite = 1373.52 barns/electron
    U= PERaspite x ρElectron density= 9607.12 barns/cm3
    Fermion index Fermion index = 0.15
    Boson index = 0.85
    Radioactivity Raspite is not radioactive

How to Identify Raspite

Raspite can be identified by light yellow, yellow gray or yellow brown color variations. It has perfect cleavage, a yellow white streak and adamantine luster. The hardness of raspite ranges from 2.5 to 3, and its density is 8.47 g/cm3.

Global Distribution

Raspite is distributed in the following places:

  • Proprietary mine, Broken Hill, and the Cordillera mine, near Tuena, New South Wales, Australia
  • Otani mine, Kyoto Prefecture, Japan
  • Kramat Pulai mine, Kinta district, Perak, Malaysia
  • Sumidoro gold placers, Municipio do Mariana, Minas Gerais, Brazil
  • Gifurwe, Rwanda
  • Clara mine, near Oberwolfach, Black Forest, Germany

Occurrence of Raspite and Useful Mineral Association

Raspite occurs as an uncommon secondary mineral formed in the oxidized zone of tungsten-bearing hydrothermal base metal deposits. Ferritungstite, cuprotungstite, alumotungstite, yttrotungstite and stolzite are closely associated with raspite.


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