University of Cambridge

Pink rhodonite

H. K. D. H. Bhadeshia

This sample of Rhodonite was sent as a gift to Harry by Professor Jer Ren Yang (PT Group Member) of the National Taiwan University. Rhodonite gets its name from the Greek term meaning "rose" because of its colour.

Rhodonite has the chemical formula CaMn3Mn(Si5O15) and its crystal structure is triclinic consisting of a primitive unit cell with space group P1.

The lattice parameters are a=0.98456 nm, b=1.04992 nm, c=1.22005 nm, α=108.726°, β=103.724° and γ=82.113° (Nelson and Griffen, American Mineralogist 90 (2005) 969-983).

The main use of rhodonite today is as a gem stone. There is a lot of nonsense talked about rhodonite crystals having a "soothing energy", but that is best confined to the realms of fantasy.

rhodonite, triclinic, crystallography, Harry Bhadeshia

rhodonite, triclinic, crystallography, Harry Bhadeshia

rhodonite, triclinic, crystallography, Harry Bhadeshia

Rhodonite looks pleasant and hence makes lovely displays.
rhodonite, triclinic, crystallography, Harry Bhadeshia

Crystal structure projected on to the “yz” plane. Note that the chemical composition here is a little different from that given above.
rhodonite, triclinic, crystallography, Harry Bhadeshia

Crystal structure projected on to the “xy” plane. Note that the chemical composition here is a little different from that given above.


4th edition
4th edition, 2017
3rd edition
3rd edition, 2015
1st edition
1st edition, 2017


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