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The chemical formula of mineral Massicot is indicated by PbO, a Lead Oxide. Massicot actually belongs to the Oxides and Hydroxides mineral class. The name of the mineral Massicot was actually derived from the Early Arabic, through Spanish mazacote and the French name for oxide of Lead. The mineral was first described in 1841 in Germany. Massicot is known to crystallize in the orthorhombic crystal system of crystal formation. In optical mineralogy, this orthorhombic crystal system comprises crystals having three mutually perpendicular axes, of which all are of different lengths. Massicot is considered as a minor ore of lead. Massicot is also used as pigment.

 

Mineral Massicot most commonly exists as a slight yellowish coating on many lead specimens, often to the detriment of the aesthetic appeal of the underlying mineral. Massicot is commonly used as mineral specimen and it is usually found exhibiting fascinating appearance when viewed with the aid of petrographic polarizing light microscopes. Most Massicot crystals are generally found opaque in appearance, but thin scales can be transparent. The crystal habits of mineral Massicot as described in optical mineralogy usually include massive, earthy and scaly coatings on other lead minerals, which is commonly fascinating when viewed under polarizing microscopes for geologists. 

 

            Massicot is most commonly found showing yellow to reddish yellow color due to minium inclusions that can be seen clearly visible when the specimen is evaluated with the aid of petrographic polarizing microscopes used in optical mineralogy. Massicot is also most commonly found exhibiting greasy, earthy to dull luster in reflected light of the polarizing microscope. Massicot is most commonly found showing distinct cleavage in two perpendicular directions and this can be seen more clearly visible when the specimen is viewed closely with the aid of polarizing microscopes for mineralogists. But then this cleavage is rarely seen. Massicot is also usually found showing uneven fracture when viewed under petrographic polarizing microscope. The specific gravity measure of the is usually found ranging from 9.6 grams per cubic centimeters to 9.7 grams per cubic centimeters, which is considered well above average for any mineral. The hardness measure of mineral Massicot when it is evaluated using the Mohs scale method is usually found 2. Massicot mineral specimen is often found leaving a light yellow streak when it is rubbed on a white porcelain streak plate.

 

            Massicot also exhibits very high surface relief when it is closely viewed under several adjustments on the aperture diaphragm of the polarized light microscope for geologists. Massicot is usually found showing biaxial positive figure when it is evaluated between crossed nicols of the petrographic polarizing microscope for geologists. The refractive index of the mineral Massicot is usually found ranging from 2.510 to 2.710. The maximum birefringence exhibited by Massicot when it is viewed between crossed nicols of the petrographic polarizing microscopes is usually 0.200. Mineral Massicot also exhibits a strong dispersion under polarizing microscopes used in optical mineralogy. It also shows visible pleochroism when evaluated with the aid of petrographic polarizing light microscopes. Mineral Massicot contains lead and it is highly recommended to wash hands after handling Massicot specimens. It is also advised to avoid inhaling dust when handling or breaking the specimen of Massicot mineral. Never lick or ingest the specimen. Massicot on the other hand is not radioactive.

 

Mineral Massicot is commonly found associated with other interesting minerals including cerussite, barite, minium, lead, galena, pyromorphite, sphalerite, mimetite, wulfenite, and bindheimite. Massicot is actually an oxidation or alteration product of other lead minerals. Massicot forms under oxidizing conditions of lead ore bodies. In fact, its presence is very indicative of the degree of oxidation. This makes Massicot as something that is of interest to petrologists or rock scientists. Mineral Massicot notably occurs at several localities including Saxony in Germany, Inyo County in California, some areas in the United States, Sardinia in Italy, Mexico, Lavrion in Greece, and also in Hungary.



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Thursday, November 27th, 2008 at 3:47 am
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The Oxides and Hydroxides Mineral Class
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