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Ultralow-velocity zones (ULVZs) at the core–mantle boundary (CMB) represent some of the most preternatural features in Earth’s mantle. These zones most likely contain partial melt, extremely high iron content ferropericlase, or combinations of both. We analyzed a new collection of 58,155 carefully processed and quality-controlled broadband recordings of the seismic phase SPdKS in the epicentral distance range from 106° to 115°. These data sample 56.9% of the CMB by surface area. From these recordings we searched for the most anomalous seismic waveforms that are indicative of ULVZ presence. We used a Bayesian approach to identify the regions of the CMB that have the highest probability of containing ULVZs, thereby identifying sixteen regions of interest. Of these regions, we corroborate well-known ULVZ existence beneath the South China Sea, southwest Pacific, the Samoa hotspot, the southwestern US/northern Mexico, and Iceland. We find good evidence for new ULVZs beneath North Africa, East Asia, and north of Papua New Guinea. We provide further evidence for ULVZs in regions where some evidence has been hinted at before beneath the Philippine Sea, the Pacific Northwest, and the Amazon Basin. Additional evidence is shown for potential ULVZs at the base of the Caroline, San Felix and Galapagos hotspots.more » « less
The response of forsterite, Mg2SiO4, under dynamic compression is of fundamental importance for understanding its phase transformations and high‐pressure behavior. Here, we have carried out an in situ X‐ray diffraction study of laser‐shocked polycrystalline and single‐crystal forsterite (
a‐, b‐, and c‐orientations) from 19 to 122 GPa using the Matter in Extreme Conditions end‐station of the Linac Coherent Light Source. Under laser‐based shock loading, forsterite does not transform to the high‐pressure equilibrium assemblage of MgSiO3bridgmanite and MgO periclase, as has been suggested previously. Instead, we observe forsterite and forsterite III, a metastable polymorph of Mg2SiO4, coexisting in a mixed‐phase region from 33 to 75 GPa for both polycrystalline and single‐crystal samples. Densities inferred from X‐ray diffraction data are consistent with earlier gas‐gun shock data. At higher stress, the response is sample‐dependent. Polycrystalline samples undergo amorphization above 79 GPa. For ‐ and ‐oriented crystals, a mixture of crystalline and amorphous material is observed to 108 GPa, whereas the ‐oriented forsterite adopts an unknown phase at 122 GPa. The first two sharp diffraction peaks of amorphous Mg2SiO4show a similar trend with compression as those observed for MgSiO3in both recent static‐ and laser‐driven shock experiments. Upon release to ambient pressure, all samples retain or revert to forsterite with evidence for amorphous material also present in some cases. This study demonstrates the utility of femtosecond free‐electron laser X‐ray sources for probing the temporal evolution of high‐pressure silicate structures through the nanosecond‐scale events of shock compression and release.