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Shock metamorphism of minerals in meteorites could help to understand the shock history of its parent body and also provide a window on the interior of the Earth. Although shock features in olivine have been well known within and adjacent to shock melt veins and shock melt pockets in meteorites, there are processes that are not yet completely understood. Ringwoodite is formed by crystallization from olivine melts or solid-state phase transformation of olivine. Typically olivine clasts with a ringwoodite rim around an olivine core have been documented from only a handful of meteorites. Here we report results from GRV053684, a highly shocked L6 chondrite that was collected by Chinese Antarctic Research Expedition in 2006 to Antarctica. The investigation of the shock pressure history and the transformation mechanism of olivine to ringwoodite using backscattered electron images, Raman spectra, major element quantitative analyses, and quantitative wavelength-dispersive spectrometry elemental X-ray maps. Ringwoodite in the shock melt vein generally displays as Fe-rich (Fa37-43) polycrystalline rims around Fe-poor (Fa11-20) olivine core and as small individual clasts embedded in shock melt vein matrix. The difference in FeO between ringwoodite rim and olivine core implies that Fe was preferentially partitioned to ringwoodite. The occurrence of ringwoodite and maskelynite indicates a shock pressure ~20 GPa. The FeO and MgO diffusion indicates the transformation process of olivine to ringwoodite is a diffusion-controlled nucleation and growth. The spatial association between ringwoodite and the shock melt vein matrix suggests high temperature plays a key role in prompting phase transformation.
- shock metamorphism
- phase transformation
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