• Estimating shock pressures based on high-pressure minerals in shock-induced melt veins of L chondrites

      Xie, Z.; Sharp, T. G.; De Carli, P. S. (The Meteoritical Society, 2006-01-01)
      Here we report the transmission electron microscopy (TEM) observations of the mineral assemblages and textures in shock-induced melt veins from seven L chondrites of shock stages ranging from S3 to S6. The mineral assemblages combined with phase equilibrium data are used to constrain the crystallization pressures, which can be used to constrain shock pressure in some cases. Thick melt veins in the TenhamL6 chondrite contain majorite and magnesiowstite in the center, and ringwoodite, akimotoite, vitrified silicate-perovskite, and majorite in the edge of the vein, indicating crystallization pressure of ~25 GPa. However, very thin melt veins (5-30 micrometers wide) in Tenham contain glass, olivine, clinopyroxene, and ringwoodite, suggesting crystallization during transient low-pressure excursions as the shock pressure equilibrated to a continuum level. Melt veins of Umbarger include ringwoodite, akimotoite, and clinopyroxene in the vein matrix, and Fe2SiO4-spinel and stishovite in SiO2-FeO-rich melt, indicating a crystallization pressure of ~18 GPa. The silicate melt veins in Roy contain majorite plus ringwoodite, indicating pressure of ~20 GPa. Melt veins of Ramsdorf and Nakhon Pathon contain olivine and clinoenstatite, indicating pressure of less than 15 GPa. Melt veins of Kunashak and La Lande include albite and olivine, indicating crystallization at less than 2.5 GPa. Based upon the assemblages observed, crystallization of shock veins can occur before, during, or after pressure release. When the assemblage consists of high-pressure minerals and that assemblage is constant across a larger melt vein or pocket, the crystallization pressure represents the equilibrium shock pressure.
    • High-pressure phases in shock-induced melt veins of the Umbarger L6 chondrite: Constraints of shock pressure

      Xie, Z.; Sharp, T. G. (The Meteoritical Society, 2004-01-01)
      We report a previously undocumented set of high-pressure minerals in shock-induced melt veins of the Umbarger L6 chondrite. High-pressure minerals were identified with transmission electron microscopy (TEM) using selected area electron diffraction and energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy. Ringwoodite (Fa30), akimotoite (En11Fs89), and augite (En42Wo33Fs25) were found in the silicate matrix of the melt vein, representing the crystallization from a silicate melt during the shock pulse. Ringwoodite (Fa27) and hollandite-structured plagioclase were also found as polycrystalline aggregates in the melt vein, representing solid state transformation or melting with subsequent crystallization of entrained host rock fragments in the vein. In addition, Fe2SiO4-spinel (Fa66-Fa99) and stishovite crystallized from a FeO-SiO2-rich zone in the melt vein, which formed by shock melting of FeO-SiO2-rich material that had been altered and metasomatized before shock. Based on the pressure stabilities of the high-pressure minerals, ringwoodite, akimotoite, and Ca-clinopyroxene, the melt vein crystallized at approximately 18 GPa. The Fe2SiO4-spinel + stishovite assemblage in the FeO-SiO2- rich melts is consistent with crystallization of the melt vein matrix at the pressure up to 18 GPa. The crystallization pressure of ~18 GPa is much lower than the 4590 GPa pressure one would conclude from the S6 shock effects in melt veins (Stöffler et al. 1991) and somewhat less than the 25-30 GPa inferred from S5 shock effects (Schmitt 2000) found in the bulk rock.