Molybdenite (January 11th, 2016)

Mineral Monday again, and this week we bring you Molybdenite, the primary ore mineral of Molybdenum.

This soft mineral has a slight purple tinge and occurs in veins that were supplied with very hot fluids and gasses deep underground. The metal is used in everything from steel manufacture, fertilizers and batteries.

The specimen was collected in 1992 at the Boss Mountain mine in northern British Columbia. The veins bearing Molybdenite were formed around 102 million years ago, as ancient island chains drifted in from the Pacific and smashed into the coast of ancestral North America. The heat and the pressure melted the rocks and dissolved metals in fluids that were then redistributed through complex networks of veins.

The Boss Mountain deposit was discovered in 1917. The following year, a small amount of selected molybdenum ore was shipped for processing. The Consolidated Mining and Smelting Company acquired the rights to the deposit in 1930, later selling the claims for taxes in 1955. Herman Huestis and Associates later acquired the claims. From 1956 to 1960, Climax Molybdenum Corporation conducted exploration programs that included mapping, geophysics, trenching and 9752 metres of diamond drilling. Noranda Mines Ltd. purchased the rights to Boss Mountain in 1961, operating until 1983, when the mine closed due to low molybdenum prices. NMC Resource Corp. currently holds a 100 per cent option on the property

Specimen Information

SStore: Pacific Museum of the Earth, University of British Columbia
Collection: UBC Geological Collection
Accession #: 6700
Primary Mineral: Molybdenite
Secondary Mineral: Quartz
Site Locality: Boss Mountain
Location: British Columbia
Special Features: n/a