The shear strength of olivine (forsterite) varies from 1.77 kb at 5.5 kb confining pressure to 15.2 kb at 50 kb confining pressure in room temperature shearing tests at strain rates from 1/sec to 10−3/sec. Extreme grain granulation, increased undulatory extinction, diffuse X-ray patterns and refractive index reductions up to 0.030 are found in sheared pellets. Extreme microfracturing and absence of recrystallization or gliding indicate predominantly brittle behavior.

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