Bobkingite – a new mineral
Bob King, Life President of the Geology Section, has been honoured by having a new mineral* named after him. This is a rare, prestigious and thoroughly deserved accolade from the mineral world.
The mineral Bobkingite is a copper chloride with the formula Cu52+Cl2(OH)8(H2O)2 and is described from New Cliffe Hill Quarry, Stanton under Bardon, Leicestershire. It was found in a thick deposit of cuprite that formed between the Charnian rocks and their Triassic cover. This copper mineralisation occurs in many places in the Charnwood area, but was spectacularly displayed in the early days of quarrying at New Cliffe Hill. Unfortunately the deposit no longer exists. Bobkingite is described as being soft blue transparent plates up to 0.2mm across. The crystals have a vitreous lustre, pale blue streak and have no observable fluorescence under long and short wave U/V light. The crystals are perched on a compact fibrous crust of malachite and crystalline azurite attached to massive cuprite.
Bob has an international reputation in mineralogy and has always maintained an interest in Leicestershire mineralogy. Indeed his PhD thesis was on this very subject. It is therefore very appropriate that the new mineral found in Leicestershire is named after him. To add to the story from the Section’s point of view, one of the authors of the paper is Neil Hubbard, one of our long standing members.
The full reference is:
Hawthorne, Cooper, Grice, Roberts and Hubbard. 2002. Description and crystal structure of Bobkingite,
a new mineral from New Cliffe Hill Quarry, Stanton Under Bardon,
Leicestershire, UK. Mineralogical
* The term new mineral needs some explanation. A new mineral is a chemical compound that has been found for the first time in a geological context. Obviously there are thousands of compounds that have been created in laboratories. These would be elevated to mineral status if they were ever to be found naturally.