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Abstract

This contribution presents a quantitative microstructural analysis of a polycrystalline aggregate of gypsum, deformed in torsion (T=70–90 °C) at γ (shear strain) ranging from 0 to 4.82. Quantitative microstructural analysis is used to compare the evolution of microstructures observed by optical microscope with those obtained from analysis of X-ray and neutron diffraction data. This analysis shows that during experimental deformation, gypsum accommodated strain by brittle and plastic deformation mechanisms, developing Riedel-like microfaults with plastic foliations and crystallographic preferred orientation (CPO). The relations of microstructures show that with increasing strain, the Riedel systems start from R planes with an angle of ≈30° to the Imposed Shear Plane. This angle decreases (5°–15°) when strain increases, and Y planes develop. Quantitative texture analysis (QTA) shows that S-foliations start developing at low γ and maintain their orientation up to high γ, and that the most active slip system is the (010) along normal to (100) and the [001]-axis. Shape preferred orientation (SPO) of gypsum does not coincide with the theoretical orientation as it does not decrease with increasing strain. This discrepancy is explained by the role of the brittle shear planes that impose a back rotation to gypsum. No brittle to plastic transition occurs. But both plastic and brittle structures contemporaneously accommodate and localize strain.

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