Geology/History

A relatively uncommon mineral belonging to the Apatite group of phosphates. Vanadinite is one of the main industrial ores of the metal Vanadium & is sometimes used as a Lead ore. It is composed (by weight) of 73.15% lead, 10.79% vanadium, 13.56% oxygen, & 2.50% chlorine. A secondary mineral which occurs through chemical alterations of a pre-existing material.

Found in arid climates & formed by the oxidation of lead ore deposits such as Galena. During oxidisation Vanadium is leached from wall-rock silicates & Vanadinite starts to grow. Associated minerals include Mimetite, Pyromorphite, Descloizite, Mottramite, Wulfenite, Cerussite, Anglesite, Calcite, Barite & other various Iron oxides minerals. 

First discovered in 1801 in Mexico by Spanish mineralogist Andres Manuel del Rio & later named by 19th century Swedish chemist Nils Seftsrom in 1830 after Vanadis (Freyja), the norse god of beauty.Vanadinite deposits have since been unearthed in South America, Europe, Africa & North America. 

The Vanadium can be extracted by roasting & smelting. A commonly used process for extracting the Vanadium begins with heating of Vanadinite to about 850°C with Salt (NaCl) or Sodium Carbonate (Na2CO3). This produces Sodium Vanadate (NaVO3). This is dissolved in water, then treated with Ammonium Chloride. This gives the precipitate of Ammonium Metavanadate, which is then melted to create a crude form of Vanadium Pentoxide (V2O5). The final stage is the reduction of Vanadium Pentoxide with Calcium results in pure Vanadium. 

In modern day society Vanadium has many important commercial uses. The first large-scale industrial use of Vanadium in steels was in the chassis of the Ford T Model, this introduction was inspired by French race cars. Vanadium steel is lighter in weight & has greater tensile strength. Vanadium oxide has been used to induce colour centers in Corundum & create simulated Alexandrite which is naturally a Chrysoberyl. 

Metaphysical Properties

Very high energy crystal, promotes great strength & energetic endurance. An excellent creation & manifestation crystal, helps to develop & unfold ideas. Increases the auric energy creating connectivity & ignites Kundalini fire making it an excellent healing tool. Focuses the mind & removes blockages.

Opens the third eye & crown. Gives understanding of external energies & how to harness them. Fantastic for stress relief as it shows problems as opportunities. Removes negative energy & protects positive energy. This is the get it done crystal. Will charge other crystals.

Crystal Healing

Used for breathing difficulties e.g. Asthma, bronchitis. Good for exhaustion, digestion & problems with bladder.

Mineralogy

Group: Vanadate Mineral – Apatite group

Crystal System: Hexagonal, Dipyramidal

Composition: Pb5(VO4)3Cl

Form/Habit: Prismatic or nodular; may be acicular, hairlike, fibrous; rarely rounded, globular

Hardness: 3-4

Cleavage: None

Fracture: Uneven to conchoidal

Lustre: Resinous to sub-adamantine

Streak: Brownish yellow

Specific Gravity: 6.8–7.1 (measured) 6.95 (calculated)

Transparency: Transparent, translucent or opaque

R.I: nω = 2.416, nε = 2.350

Colour: Bright red, orange-red, red-brown, brown, yellow, grey or colourless, may be concentrically zoned

Birefringence: δ = 0.066

Fluorescence: None

Strunz Classification: 08.BN.05