Vibrational spectroscopies (Fourier Transform Infra Red, FTIR, and Raman) are exceptionally valuable tools for the identification and crystal–chemical study of fibrous minerals, and asbestos amphiboles in particular. Raman spectroscopy has been widely applied in toxicological studies and thus a large corpus of reference data on regulated species is found in the literature. However, FTIR spectroscopy has been mostly used in crystal–chemical studies and very few data are found on asbestos amphiboles. This paper is intended to fill this gap. We report new FTIR data collected on a suite of well-characterized samples of the five regulated amphibole species: anthophyllite, amosite, and crocidolite, provided by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) Organization, and tremolite and actinolite, from two well-known occurrences. The data from these reference samples have been augmented by results from additional specimens to clarify some aspects of their spectroscopic features. We show that the FTIR spectra in both the OH-stretching region and in the lattice modes region can be effective for rapid identification of the asbestos type.
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