Rakovan, John Department of Geology, Miami University, Oxford, Ohio.
Last reviewed:October 2019
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Apatite is a generic name used to describe calcium phosphates with the simplified formula Ca10(PO4)6X2 (X = F, Cl, OH). Three end members form a complete solid-solution series involving the halide and hydroxyl anions, and these are the species fluorapatite, Ca10(PO4)6F2; chlorapatite, Ca10(PO4)6Cl2; and hydroxyapatite (hydroxylapatite), Ca10(PO4)6(OH)2. The fluoride end member, being the most common, is often simply called apatite. The most abundant and widespread of the phosphate minerals, apatite normally crystallizes in the hexagonal system, space group P63/m.
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