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Xenotime

Xenotime is a rare earth phosphate mineral, the major component of which is yttrium orthophosphate (YPO4). It forms a solid solution series with chernovite-(Y) (YAsO4) and therefore may contain trace impurities of arsenic as well as silicon dioxide and calcium. Xenotime is used chiefly as a source of yttrium and heavy lanthanide metals (dysprosium, ytterbium, erbium and gadolinium). Occasionally, gemstones are also cut from the finer xenotime crystals.Xenotime has two directions of perfect prismatic cleavage and its fracture is uneven to irregular (sometimes splintery). It is considered brittle and its streak is white. The refractive index of xenotime is 1.720-1.815 with a birefringence of 0.095 (uniaxial positive). Xenotime is dichroic with pink, yellow or yellowish brown seen in the extraordinary ray and brownish yellow, grayish brown or greenish brown seen in the ordinary ray.

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