London, England/london2G-008

Previous | Home | Next

Of main interest to scholars of "Rediscovery" is this specimen of columbite (iron niobate) from Middletown, Connecticut USA {LINK: Middletown020}, found on the top floor of the Geology Section (east wing) of the Natural History Museum. Hatchett discovered a new element which he called "columbium" (name later changed to niobium) from a similar sample from the same area of Connecticut. Columbite has the ideal formula of FeNb2O6, but is typically a mixture of iron and manganese, niobium and tantalum, for a complex formula of (Fe,Mn)(Nb,Ta)2O6. The sample analyzed by Hatchett was from the Sloane Collection in the British Museum {LINK: London2D-606} and appears like this sample. His original columbite sample appears in the next photo.