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November-December 2013

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Who's Who in Mineral Names: Carl A. Francis (b. 1949)

Carlfrancisite, Mn32+(Mn2+,Mg,Fe3+,Al)42[As3+O3]2(As5+O4)4[(Si,As5+)O4]6[(As5+,Si)O4]2(OH)42, is a complex manganese arsenate occurring with manganese silicates and oxides such as alleghanyite, pyrochroite, and ribbeite in metamorphosed lenses associated with Cu-Pb-Ag sulfide ore in feldspar-rich sandstones that were subsequently reworked by late-stage hydrothermal solutions. Carlfrancisite was found in 1982, in the E15-11 south stope, 11 level, at 1,241-meter elevation, in the Asia West sector of the Kombat mine, Otavi Valley, Namibia. It is closely related to mcgovernite. To date, the Kombat mine is the type locality for eleven new species. Carlfrancisite is a yellow to yellow-orange micaceous mineral forming curved aggregates to 2 cm. The name honors Dr. Carl A. Francis, mineralogist and curator of the Harvard University mineral collection for thirty-four years, who was involved in the initial characterization of the chemical composition and unit cell of this mineral. Francis has made many significant contributions to scientific mineralogy, mineral curation, and the mineral collecting community. Carlfrancisite was described and named by Frank C. Hawthorne and William W. Pinch (Hawthorne and Pinch 2012).

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