New constraints on Xe incorporation mechanisms in olivine from first-principles calculations

Abstract : Storage of Xe at depth in silicate minerals has recently been proposed to explain the low Xe abundance in the Earth’s and Mars’ atmospheres compared to other noble gases (the so-called ‘Missing Xenon’ issue). Evidences for incorporation, and thus reactivity of Xe in olivine at high pressure and high temperature are based on variations in cell parameters and the appearance of a new Raman band. To constrain the, so far only hypothetical, Xe incorporation mechanism in olivine, we theoretically investigated models of Xe-bearing olivine using density functional theory. Three types of incorporation mechanisms are tested: Xe for Si and Xe for Mg substitutions, and interstitial Xe. Xe for Si substitution, implying an oxidation of Xe, is found to be the only mechanism consistent with experimental observations, leading to an increase of cell parameter a and the appearance of a new Raman band around 720–750 cm−1 associated with XeO stretching vibrations. Raman spectroscopy makes it possible to identify Xe incorporation site, even at low Xe content, due to high Xe polarizability. An estimation of Xe content in olivine, based on present work and previous in situ experimental results, shows that up to 0.4 at.% Xe could be stored in olivine at depth.
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Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, Elsevier, 2018, 222, pp.146-155. 〈10.1016/j.gca.2017.10.028〉
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Celine Crepisson, Marc Blanchard, Michele Lazzeri, Etienne Balan, Chrystèle Sanloup. New constraints on Xe incorporation mechanisms in olivine from first-principles calculations. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, Elsevier, 2018, 222, pp.146-155. 〈10.1016/j.gca.2017.10.028〉. 〈hal-01653380〉

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