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Galena

Sulfide Mineral Pictures

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Galena is lead sulfide, PbS, and is the most important ore of lead. (more below)
Lead sulfide
Photo (c) 2008 Andrew Alden, licensed to About.com (fair use policy)
Galena is a soft mineral of Mohs hardness of 2.5, a dark-gray streak and a high density, around 7.5 times that of water. Sometimes galena is bluish gray, but mostly it's straight gray.

Galena has a strong cubic cleavage that is apparent even in massive specimens. Its luster is very bright and metallic. Good pieces of this striking mineral are available in any rock shop and in occurrences around the world. This galena specimen is from the Sullivan mine in Kimberley, British Columbia.

Galena forms in low- and medium-temperature ore veins, along with other sulfide minerals, carbonate minerals, and quartz. These can be found in igneous or sedimentary rocks. It often contains silver as an impurity, and silver is an important byproduct of the lead industry.

Other Hydrothermal Vein Minerals

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