In this chapter, an overview of the findings to date from laboratory measurements of diffusion of cations in the accessory mineral phases zircon, monazite, apatite, titanite (sphene) and xenotime is presented. These minerals differ widely from one another in structure and composition, but share some common characteristics. While they are generally low in modal abundance, they tend to incorporate elements that are important tracers of geochemical processes (e.g., the rare earth and high-field strength elements) as well as U and/or Th, which make them valuable as geochronometers. Two other phases commonly considered “accessory,” rutile and baddeleyite, are discussed in other...

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