Phase relations in the system Fe-Si determined in an internally-resistive heated DAC
Abstract:It is believed that the iron-rich Earth’s core contains some amounts of light elements on the basis of the density deficit of 7 % compared to pure iron. The identification of the kinds and amounts of the light elements in the core places constraints on the origin, formation, and evolution of the Earth because dissolution of light elements into an iron-rich core should place important constraints on the thermodynamic conditions (pressure (P), temperature (T), and oxygen fugacity) of the equilibration between liquid silicate and liquid iron during the core formation. Among potential light elements, silicon has been attracting attentions because it is abundant in the mantle, partitioned into both solid and liquid irons, and very sensitive to the oxygen fugacity.
An important phase relation in iron alloy is a transition between the face-centred cubic (FCC) structure and hexagonal close-packed (HCP) structure. This boundary is a key to infer the stable structure in the inner core and is used to derive thermodynamic properties of the phases (Komabayashi, 2014). In the Fe-Si system, previous reports were based on experiments in laser-heated diamond anvil cells (DAC), which might have included large termperature uncertainties.
We have revisited this boundary in the system Fe-Si using an internally resistive-heated DAC combined with synchrotron X-ray diffraction at the beamline ID27, ESRF. The internally-heated DAC (Komabayashi et al., 2009; 2012) provides much more stable heating than the laser-heated DAC and much higher temperature than externally resistive-heated DAC, which enables us to place tight constraints on the P-T locations of the boundaries. Also because the minimum measurable temperature is as low as 1000 K due to the stable electric heating, the internal heating is able to examine the low temperature phase stability which was not studied by the previous studies. We will report the P-T locations of the boundaries and evaluate the effect of Si on the phase relation of Earth’s core materials.
Komabayashi, J. Geophys. Res., 119, 2014; Komabayashi et al., Earth Planet. Sci. Lett. 282, 2009; Komabayashi et al., Phys. Chem. Mineral 39, 2012.