Depositional Environment for Metatyuyamunite and Related Minerals from Caverns of Sonora, TX (USA)

Document Type


Publication Date



metatyuyamunite, celestite, cave mineralogy, Sonora (Texas)

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)



A new mineral association composed of metatyuyamunite, celestite, opal and several minor crystalline phases has been identified in the Caverns of Sonora (Texas). The minerals were identified by means of X-ray diffractometry and optical and scanning electron microscopy. The main component of this association is metatyuyamunite, a uranyl vanadate mineral that appears as aggregates of sub-millimeter platy-like crystals that are often covered by botryoidal opal coatings. The orthorhombic unit cell of the Sonora metatyuyamunite had parameters a = 10.418, b = 8.508, and c = 17.173 Å. Opal and celestite formed either directly over the yellow crust or along the cracks that traverse the limy mud on which metatyuyamunite was precipitated. The secondary uranium-vanadium minerals described herein were precipitated in the final stages of cave development.

Was this content written or created while at USF?


Citation / Publisher Attribution

European Journal of Mineralogy, v. 13, issue 1, p. 135-143