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Digital Subscriptions > Rock & Gem Magazine > November 2018 > Wulfenite, Molybdenite & Molybdenum

Wulfenite, Molybdenite & Molybdenum

ROCK SCIENCE

Of the 42 minerals that contain molybdenum as an essential element, most collectors are familiar only with wulfenite and molybdenite. Wulfenite (lead molybdate, PbMoO4) crystallizes in the tetragonal system as thin tabs with a diagnostic, bright-orange color. Molybdenite (molybdenum disulfide, MoS2), the only ore of molybdenum, crystallizes in the hexagonal system as opaque, distorted tabs and dark-bluish-gray masses with a metallic luster and a telltale greasy feel.

Much less familiar is molybdenum itself, which does not occur free in nature. Pure molybdenum is rarely, if ever, seen in its metallic state. Nevertheless, it is an important industrial metal with an interesting history.

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Rock & Gem November 2018, GEOLOGICAL GENESIS: Dating Mineral Deposits, A MODERN discovery in Silver valley, And More.....