My research involves unraveling the nature of matter on Earth. Atoms form all Earth materials, and through X-ray crystallography. I work to determine the arrangement of atoms in crystalline Earth materials called minerals.

I have determined and studied the atomic arrangements of numerous minerals on the Earth and even one lunar mineral (merrilite from the Apollo 14 mission). My research, which involves students in a large way, centers on the minerals apatite and tourmaline. Apatite is being investigated as a solid-state nuclear waste repository, providing a way to safely sequester radioactive waste. It also is the mineral that forms all the hard parts of the human body except small parts of the inner ear, and thus apatite studies have biological implications as well.

I am interested in studies on any mineral, and would be pleased to be consulted by any students with mineralogical questions.


Recent Publications

Papers (* denotes student co-author):
In Press and Published:

  • Lupulescu, M.V., Ehlers*, A.M., Hughes, J.M., and Bailey, D.G. (In Press) Al-rich Warwickite from St. Lawrence County, New York: Mineral association, chemical composition, cation ordering, and site-splitting in the warwickite M1 site. Canadian Mineralogist.
  • Kampf, A.R., Hughes, J.M., Nash, B.P., Marty, J., and Rose, T. P. (2020) Lumsdenite, NaCa3Mg2(As3+V4+2V5+10As5+6O51)·45H2O, a new polyoxometalate mineral from the Packrat mine, Mesa County, Colorado, USA. Canadian Mineralogist, 58, 1-15.
  • Kampf, A.R., Cooper, M.A., Hughes, J.M., Nash, B.P., Hawthorne, F.C., and Marty, J. (2020) Caseyite, a new mineral containing a variant of the flat-Al13 polyoxometalate cation. American Mineralogist, 105, 123-131.
  • Dannenberg*, S.G., Di Paolo*, D., Ehlers*, A.M., McCarty*, K.P., Mancini*, M.T., Reuter*, M.B., Seth*, D.M., Song*, Z.S., Valladares*, M.I., Zhu*, X., Hughes, J.M., and Lupulescu, M.V. (2019) The atomic arrangement of Cr-rich tourmaline from the #1 mine, Balmat, St. Lawrence, County, New York, U.S.A. Minerals, 2019, 9, 398-404.
  • Kampf, A.R., Hughes, J.M., Nash, B.P., and Marty, J. (2019) Bicapite, KNa2Mg2(H2PV5+14O42)·25H2O, a new mineral with a bicapped Keggin anion from the Pickett Corral mine, Montrose County, Colorado, USA. American Mineralogist, 104, 1851-1856.
  • Ertl, A.E., Rakovan, J.R., Hughes, J.M., Bernhardt, H.-J., and Rossman, G.R. (2019) Vanadium-rich muscovite from Austria: Crystal structure, chemical analysis, and spectroscopic investigations. Canadian Mineralogist, 57(3), 383-389.
  • Kampf, A.R., Hughes, J.M., Nash, B.N., and Marty, J. (2019) Pandoraite-Ba and Pandoraite-Ca, BaV4+5V5+2O16·3H2O and CaV4+5V5+2O16·3H2O, two new vanadium oxide bronze minerals in solid solution from the Pandora mine, La Sal district, San Juan County, Colorado, USA. The Canadian Mineralogist, 57(2),  255-265.
  • Cooper, M.A., Hawthorne, F.C., Kampf, A.R., and Hughes, J.M. (2019) Determination of V4+:V5+ ratios in the [V10O28] decavanadate polyanion. Canadian Mineralogist, 57(2), 235-244.
  • Hawthorne, F.C., Cooper, M.A., Kampf, A.R., and Hughes, J.M. (2019) Identifying protonated decavanadate polyanions. Canadian Mineralogist, 57(2), 245-253.
  • Kampf, A.R., Nash, B.P., Adams, P.M., Marty, J., and Hughes, J.M. (2019) Ammoniolasalite, (NH4)2Mg2(H2O)20] [V10O28], a new decavanadate species from the Burro Mine, Slick Rock District, Colorado. Canadian Mineralogist, 56, 859-870.
  • Hughes, J.M., Harlov, D., and Rakovan, J.F. (2018) Structural variations along the apatite F-OH join. American Mineralogist, 103, 1981-1987.
  • Polowsky*, P., Tansman, G., Kindstedt, P., and Hughes, J.M. (2018) Characterization and presumptive identification of surface crystals on smear ripened cheese by polarized light microscopy. Journal of Dairy Science, 101, 7714-7723.
  • Vaughn, J.S., Lindlsely, D.H., Nekvasil, H., Hughes, J.M., and Phillips, B.L. (2017) Complex F,Cl apatite solid solution investigated using multinuclear solid-state NMR methods, The Journal of Physical Chemistry C. ms jp-2017-09912x.R1
  • Tansman*, G., Kindstedt, P., and Hughes, J.M. (2017) Crystallization and demineralization phenomena in washed-rind cheese. Journal of Dairy Science JDS-17-13067, 8694-8704.

Selected Publications

  • Lupulescu, M.V., Hughes, J.M., Chiarenzelli, J.R., and Bailey, D.G. (2017) Texture, crystal structure, and composition of fluorapatites from the magnetite-fluorapatite deposits, Eastern Adirondack Mountains, New York. Canadian Mineralogist, 55, 399-417.
  • Kampf, A.R., Nash, B.P., Hughes, J.M., and Marty, J. (2017) Burroite, Ca2(NH4)2(V10O28)·15H2O, a new decavanadate mineral from the Burro mine, San Miguel County, Colorado. The Canadian Mineralogist, 55, 473-481.
  • Tansman*, G.F., Kindstedt, P.S., and Hughes, J.M. (Accepted) Crystallization and demineralization phenomena in stabilized paste white mold cheese. Journal of Dairy Science JDS-16-12259.
  • Kampf, A.R., Nash, B.P., Marty, J., Hughes, J.M., and Rose, T.P. (2017)  Hydropascoite, Ca3(V10O28)·24H2O, a new decavanadate mineral from the packrat mine, Mesa County, Colorado. Canadian Mineralogist, 55, 207-217.
  • Kelly*, S.R., Rakovan, J.F., and Hughes, J.M. (2017) Column anion arrangements in chemically oned ternary chlorapatite and hydroxylapatite from Kurokura, Japan. American Mineralogist, 102, 720-727.
  • Tansman*, G.F., Kindstedt, P.S., and Hughes, J.M. (2017) Minerals in food: Crystal structures of ikaite and struvite from bacterial smears on washed-rind cheese.  Canadian Mineralogist, 55, 89-100.
  • Kampf, A.R., Hughes, J.M., Nash, B.P. and Marty, J. (2017) Kegginite, Pb3Ca3[AsV12O40(VO)]·20H2O, a new mineral with an ε-isomer of the Keggin anion. American Mineralogist, 102, 461-465.
  • Kampf, A.R., Nash, B.P., Marty, J., and Hughes, J.M. (2017) Mesaite, CaMn2+5(V2O7)3·12H2O, a new vanadate mineral from the Packrat mine, near Gateway, Mesa County, Colorado, USA. Mineralogical Magazine, 81, 319-327.

Awards and Recognition

Eponym of the mineral hughesite, Na3Al(V10O28)·22H2O; named in my honor, 2010.

John Hughes

Areas of Expertise and/or Research

Mineralogy, Crystal Chemistry, X-ray Crystallography


  • Ph.D., Dartmouth College, 1981


  • (802) 656-9443
Office Location:

Delehanty Hall, Room 321

Office Hours:

MWF 11:00-1:00 and by appointment