As shown by in situ infrared spectroscopy and analysis of quenched samples, phyllosilicates (muscovite, sericite, pyrophyllite, and talc) under dehydroxylation conditions lack the characteristic bands near 1600 cm−1 (bending) and 5200 cm−1 (combination) of H2O, and they contain virtually no H2O but an abundance of OH. This observation appears to be at variance with the formal description of dehydroxylation in bulk samples as 2(OH) → H2O + O, whereas it is suggested that hydrogen diffuses in the form of (OH) or/and H+ in dehydroxylation. The upper limit of H2O in the dehydroxlated bulk is likely to be at the parts per million level in phyllosilicates that contain structural OH ions equivalent to 4–5 wt% H2O. The observations suggest that H2O molecules are probably formed near the surface of the sample.

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