Wulfenite

Big Photo

Tsumeb, Oshikoto Region, Namibia
11.31 carats
© Rarestone.com

Wulfenite was named after Franz Xavier von Wulfen, an Austrian mineralogist. It was first described in 1845 for an occurrence in Bad Bleiberg, Carinthia, Austria.

It occurs as thin tabular crystals with a bright orange-red to yellow-orange colour, sometimes brown.

Wulfenite has very attractive gemmy appearance, but the crystals are often much too thin and brittle for cutting.

Wulfenite Gemstones by Colour

This table shows the variety of hues this gemstone can be found in. Click on a photo for more information.
 
 
 

Wulfenite Gemstones by Size

This table shows distribution of Wulfenite gemstone sizes that are listed on this site. This can give a good indication as to the general availability of this gemstone in different sizes.
Contributed photos
Lightest:0.98 cts
Heaviest:11.31 cts
Average:3.96 cts
Total photos:6
Do you have a larger Wulfenite? Why not upload a photo?
0.98ct to 2.01ct2.01ct to 3.05ct3.05ct to 4.08ct4.08ct to 5.11ct5.11ct to 6.15ct6.15ct to 7.18ct7.18ct to 8.21ct8.21ct to 9.24ct9.24ct to 10.28ct10.28ct to 11.31ct
General Information
Chemical Formula
PbMoO
 
4
Walter Schumann, Gemstones of the world (2001)
Photos of natural/un-cut material from mindat.org
Physical Properties of Wulfenite
Mohs Hardness3
Walter Schumann, Gemstones of the world (2001)
More from other references
Specific Gravity6.50 to 7.00
Walter Schumann, Gemstones of the world (2001)
TenacityBrittle
Walter Schumann, Gemstones of the world (2001)
Heat SensitivityVery sensitive
Walter Schumann, Gemstones of the world (2001)
Optical Properties of Wulfenite
Refractive Index2.280 to 2.405
Herve Nicolas Lazzarelli, Blue Chart Gem Identification (2010)
More from other references
Optical CharacterUniaxial/-
Herve Nicolas Lazzarelli, Blue Chart Gem Identification (2010)
Birefringence0.120 to 0.122
Herve Nicolas Lazzarelli, Blue Chart Gem Identification (2010)
Colour
Colour (General)Honey-yellow, orange, red.
Walter Schumann, Gemstones of the world (2001)
More from other references
TransparencyTransparent,Translucent
Walter Schumann, Gemstones of the world (2001)
LustreAdamantine,Resinous
Walter Schumann, Gemstones of the world (2001)
Fluorescence & other light emissions
Fluorescence (Long-Wave UV)Inert to weak purplish
Herve Nicolas Lazzarelli, Blue Chart Gem Identification (2010)
Crystallography of Wulfenite
Crystal SystemTetragonal
Walter Schumann, Gemstones of the world (2001)
More from other references
HabitIndividual crystals are usually square, flat tabular.
Michael O’Donoghue, Gems, Sixth Edition (2006)
Geological Environment
Where found:Occurs as a secondary mineral formed in the oxidized zone of hydrothermal lead deposits with the Mo commonly introduced externally.
Michael O’Donoghue, Gems, Sixth Edition (2006)
Further Information
Mineral information:Wulfenite information at mindat.org
Significant Gem Localities
Austria
 
  • Carinthia
    • Gailtaler Alpen & Karnische Alpen
Namibia
 
  • Oshikoto Region
    • Tsumeb
USA
 
  • Arizona
    • La Paz Co.
      • Trigo Mts
        • Silver District
    • Maricopa Co.
      • Painted Rock Mts
        • Painted Rock District
          • Theba
    • Pima Co.
      • Tucson Mts
        • Amole District
          • Saguaro National Monument
    • Santa Cruz Co.
      • Santa Rita Mts
        • Tyndall District
          • Cottonwood Canyon
            • Glove Mine group (Zombie & Zeco claims; Festiago-Franklin; Blacksmith adit)
Copyright © Jolyon & Katya Ralph 1993-2019. Site Map. Locality, gem & photograph data are the copyright of the individuals who submitted them. For more information please contact the . Gemdat.org is an online information resource dedicated to providing free gemmological information to all.