Mineral-like phases quenched from high-pressure synthesis experiments, as well as minerals formed in natural high-pressure environments, reveal crystal chemical principles that govern the formation of dense oxide and silicate structures. A systematic survey of known high-pressure silicate structures that incorporate octahedrally-coordinated silicon (VISi) is thus appropriate for this volume on the variation of crystal structures with temperature and pressure.

The pace of discovery of new high-pressure silicates is rapid. A decade ago, Finger and Hazen (1991) summarized the twelve known high-density structural topologies with VISi. By late 1999, twice that number had been described. Of the original...

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