Experimental data on Fe–CaCO3 interaction at 6 GPa and 1273–1873 K are presented. The system models the hypothetical redox interaction in subducting slabs at the contact with the reduced mantle and a putative process at the core–mantle boundary. The reaction is accompanied by carbonatite melt formation. It also produces Fe3C and calcium wüstite, which form solid or liquid phases depending on experimental conditions. In iron-containing systems at 6 GPa, calcium carbonate melts in the range 1473–1573 K, which is consistent with aragonite disappearance from complex carbonate systems. The composition of calcium carbonate liquid is not influenced by metallic Fe. It corresponds to nearly pure CaCO3. Along the mantle adiabat or at slightly higher temperatures, nearly pure CaCO3 coexists with metallic iron or calcium wüstite. This hypothesis explains the coexistence of metallic iron and carbonate inclusions in lithospheric and superdeep diamonds.

You do not currently have access to this article.