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Open Access Publications from the University of California

High-pressure single-crystal X-ray diffraction and synchrotron Mössbauer study of monoclinic ferrosilite


The phase and spin transitions in single-crystal monoclinic ferrosilite, FeSiO3, were investigated using X-ray diffraction and Mössbauer spectroscopy up to lower-mantle pressures and room temperature in a helium pressure medium. Using single-crystal X-ray diffraction, we measured the equation of state of ferrosilite up to about 43 GPa. We observed a P21/c-to-C2/c phase transition between 1.5 and 1.7 GPa and a phase transition from C2/c to a distinct P21/c structure between 30 and 34 GPa. With time-domain Mössbauer spectroscopy, we determined the hyperfine parameters of ferrous iron up to 95 GPa. The phase transitions were correlated with discontinuities in Mössbauer spectral features. We observed the onset of high-spin-to-low-spin transitions in the M1 and M2 sites at ∼37 GPa and ∼74 GPa, respectively. Understanding the electronic structure of iron in a well-characterized single crystal of ferrosilite may help interpret the behavior of iron in complex dense silicate phases.

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