Abstract

The crystal structure of allanite from granitic pegmatite, the Daibosatsu Pass, Yamanashi, Japan, has been refined under the constraint of chemical composition determined by electron microprobe analysis of rare earth elements. Back-scattered-electron images and X-ray element maps of the allanites show that each of their crystal grains has chemically homogeneous distribution of major elements. A typical formula for the chemistry is: (Ca0.9200.080)∑1.000(La0.238Ce0.443Pr0.048Nd0.100Sm0.019Th0.042Mn0.0080.102) ∑1.000(Al0.607Fe3+0.317Ti0.076) ∑1.000(Al1.000)(Fe2+0.543Fe3+0.365Mn0.055Mg0.037) ∑1.000(SiO4)(Si2O7)O(OH).

The crystal structure of allanite, monoclinic, a 8.905 (1), b 5.7606 (5), c 10.123 (1) Å, β 114.78° (1), space group P21/m, Z = 2, has been refined to an unweighted R factor of 3.46% for 1459 observed reflections. Although the H atom position was not determined on the Difference-Fourier map, inspection of the bond valence sums demonstrates that the H atom is uniquely located at the O10 atom and involved in a hydrogen bond to O4. A systematic examination as to crystal chemistry of allanites suggests that the isolated SiO4 tetrahedron has the largest distortion of three kinds of the tetrahedron containing Si2O7 groups in the allanite structure. This observation is common to the epidote group minerals, while the larger distortion of A2 sites caused by occupancy by REE in allanites contrasts with the smaller one of A sites in other epidote group minerals. In the allanite groups the bond angles between the O10–H bond and hydrogen bond H…O4 are found to range from 170 to 180°.

Compilation of the chemical compositions of the title allanite and the others from granitic rocks, Japan, which reveals Th-incorporation as the coupled substitution of 3Th4+ + □ (vacancy) ⇋ 4REE3+, provides an explanation for the observation that higher Th concentrations characterize allanites from the island arcs. The ternary Al2O3-Fe2O3-∑REE diagram illustrates that allanites are grouped, according to their origins, into three classes suggestive of tectonic backgrounds for the crystallization localities; (1) intracontinental, (2) island arc and (3) continental margin.

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