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Title: The Effect of Secondary‐Phase Fraction on the Deformation of Olivine + Ferropericlase Aggregates: 1. Microstructural Evolution

To study the microstructural evolution of polymineralic rocks, we performed deformation experiments on two‐phase aggregates of olivine (Ol) + ferropericlase (Per) with periclase fractions (fPer) between 0.1 and 0.8. Additionally, single‐phase samples of both Ol and Per were deformed under the same experimental conditions to facilitate comparison of the microstructures in two‐phase and single‐phase materials. Each sample was deformed in torsion atT = 1523 K,P = 300 MPa at a constant strain rate up to a final shear strain of γ = 6 to 7. Microstructural developments, analyzed via electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD), indicate differences in both grain size and crystalline texture between single‐ and two‐phase samples. During deformation, grain size approximately doubled in our single‐phase samples of Ol and Per but remained unchanged or decreased in two‐phase samples. Zener‐pinning relationships fit to the mean grain sizes in each phase for samples with 0.1 ≤ fPer≤ 0.5 and for those with 0.8 ≥ fPer ≥ 0.5 demonstrate that the grain size of the primary phase is controlled by phase‐boundary pinning. Crystallographic preferred orientations, determined for both phases from EBSD data, are significantly weaker in the two‐phase materials than in the single‐phase materials.

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DOI PREFIX: 10.1029
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Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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  1. Abstract

    To study the mechanical behavior of polymineralic rocks, we performed deformation experiments on two‐phase aggregates of olivine (Ol) + ferropericlase (Per) with periclase fractions (fPer) between 0.1 and 0.8. Each sample was deformed in torsion atT = 1523 K,P = 300 MPa at a constant strain rate to a final shear strain ofγ = 6 to 7. The stress‐strain data and calculated values of the stress exponent,n, indicate that Ol in our samples deformed by dislocation‐accommodated sliding along grain interfaces while Per deformed via dislocation creep. At shear strains ofγ < 1, the strengths of samples withfPer > 0.5 match model predictions for both phases deforming at the same stress, the lower‐strength bound for two‐phase materials, while the strengths of samples withfPer < 0.5 are greater than predicted by models for both phases deforming at the same strain rate, the upper‐strength bound. These observations suggest a transition from a weak‐phase supported to a strong‐phase supported regime with decreasingfPer. Aboveγ = 4, however, the strength of all two‐phase samples is greater than those predicted by either the uniform‐stress or the uniform‐strain rate bound. We hypothesize that the high strengths in the Ol + Per system are due to the presence of phase boundaries in two‐phase samples, for which deformation is rate limited by dislocation motion along interfacial boundaries. This observation contrasts with the mechanical behavior of samples consisting of Ol + pyroxene, which are weaker, possibly due to impurities at phase boundaries.

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  2. Abstract

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  3. Abstract

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