Abstract

A single-crystal high pressure X-ray investigation was performed up to P = 6.5 GPa on a synthetic clinopyroxene of composition Ca0.15(1)Mg1.85(1)Si2.00(1)O6 [Di15En85, unit-cell parameters at room pressure: a = 9.6525(6)Å, b = 8.8461(2)Å, c = 5.2036(5)Å, β = 108.370(5)°, V = 421.68(4)Å3]. A first order P21-C2/c displacive phase transition was found at P = 5.1 GPa; the transition was revealed by the disappearance of the b reflections (h +k = odd) and by sharp changes in the unit-cell parameters. Reversals through the transformation show that, if present, hysteresis is smaller than 0.1 GPa. The volume variation has been described by a third-order Birch-Murnaghan equation of state with V0 = 421.68(8) Å3, KT0 = 102(2) GPa, and K′ = 8(1) for the low-symmetry phase (P21/c) and with V0 = 411.06(3) Å3 and KT0 = 108(2) GPa for the high-symmetry phase (C2/c), with K′ fixed to the value obtained for the low-symmetry form. The axial compressibility shows the following scheme: βb > βa ≅ βcasinβ for both phases. In comparison with pure clinoenstatite, Di15En85 shows a similar step in unit-cell parameters at the transition, the disappearence of hysteresis and a decrease of transition pressure and of bulk modulus.

Full intensity data sets were collected at room pressure, 2.6 and 4.5 GPa for the P21/c phase and at P = 6.2 GPa for the C2/c phase. A slight increase of the intensity of h +k odd reflections and of the difference in the A and B chain kinking angles were observed. A comparison of the structural behavior of the P21/c phase at high temperature and high pressure shows opposite behavior for M2-O bond lengths and O3-O3-O3 kinking angle.

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