What does it look like?
What is it?
Painite, name after British mineralogist Arthur Pain, was once considered to be the rarest minerals in the world. It’s a borate (BO3) mineral and when first identified only 25 specimens of this deep red minerals were known about – all from Myanmar. Of these, only two were faceted gems, which had a beautiful deep red colour (which is from the small amount of the elements vanadium and chromium that substitute into the crystal structure). However, in 2002, a new source of tis mineral was found, with nearly a thousand fragments of the mineral discovered.
Where did the structure come from?
The structure of Painite we’ve featured here was revealed by Moore and Araki, in 1976, from a specimen kept in the British Museum.