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  1. Abstract

    Here we have performed single-crystal X-ray diffraction (SCXRD) experiments on two high-quality crystal platelets of (Al,Fe)-bearing bridgmanite (Mg0.88Fe0.0653+Fe0.0352+Al0.03)(Al0.11Si0.90)O3 (Fe10-Al14-Bgm) up to 64.6(6) GPa at room temperature in a Boehler-Almax type diamond-anvil cell. Refinements on the collected SCXRD patterns reveal reliable structural information of single-crystal Fe10-Al14-Bgm, including unit-cell parameters, atomic coordinates, and anisotropic displacement parameters. Together with Mössbauer and electron microprobe analyses, our best single-crystal refinement model indicates that the sample contains ~6.5 mol% Fe3+, 3.5 mol% Fe2+, and 3 mol% Al3+ in the large pseudo-dodecahedral site (A site), and ~11 mol% Al3+ in the small octahedral site (B site). This may indicate that Al3+ in bridgmanite preferentially occupies the B site. Our results show that the compression of Fe10-Al14-Bgm with pressure causes monotonical decreases in the volumes of AO12 pseudo-dodecahedron and BO6 octahedron (VA and VB, respectively) as well as the associated A-O and B-O bond lengths. The interatomic angles of B-O1-B and B-O2-B decrease from 145.2–145.8° at 4.2(1) GPa to 143.3–143.5° at 64.6(6) GPa. Quantitative calculations of octahedral tilting angles (Ф) show that Ф increases smoothly with pressure. We found a linear relationship between the polyhedral volume ratio and the Ф in the bridgmanite with different compositions: VA/VB = –0.049Φ + 5.549. Our results indicate an increased distortion of the Fe10-Al14-Bgm structure with pressure, which might be related to the distortion of A-site Fe2+. The local environmental changes of A-site Fe2+ in bridgmanite could explain previous results on the hyperfine parameters, abnormal lattice thermal conductivity, mean force constant of iron bonds and other physical properties, which in turn provide insights into our understanding on the geophysics and geochemistry of the planet.

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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available May 1, 2025
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  4. Abstract Thermoelastic properties of mantle candidate minerals are essential to our understanding of geophysical phenomena, geochemistry, and geodynamic evolutions of the silicate Earth. However, the lower-mantle mineralogy remains much debated due to the lack of single-crystal elastic moduli (Cij) and aggregate sound velocities of (Al,Fe)-bearing bridgmanite, the most abundant mineral of the planet, at the lower mantle pressure-temperature (P-T) conditions. Here we report single-crystal Cij of (Al,Fe)-bearing bridgmanite, Mg0.88Fe0.1Al0.14Si0.90O3 (Fe10-Al14-Bgm) with Fe3+/ΣFe = ~0.65, up to ~82 GPa using X-ray diffraction (XRD), Brillouin light scattering (BLS), and impulsive stimulated light scattering (ISLS) measurements in diamond-anvil cells (DACs). Two crystal platelets with orientations of (–0.50, 0.05, –0.86) and (0.65, –0.59, 0.48), that are sensitive to deriving all nine Cij, are used for compressional and shear wave velocity (νP and νS) measurements as a function of azimuthal angles over 200° at each experimental pressure. Our results show that all Cij of singe-crystal Fe10-Al14-Bgm increase monotonically with pressure with small uncertainties of 1–2% (±1σ), except C55 and C23, which have uncertainties of 3–4%. Using the third-order Eulerian finite-strain equations to model the elasticity data yields the aggregate adiabatic bulk and shear moduli and respective pressure derivatives at the reference pressure of 25 GPa: KS = 326 ± 4 GPa, µ = 211 ± 2 GPa, KS′ = 3.32 ± 0.04, and µ′ = 1.66 ± 0.02 GPa. The high-pressure aggregate νS and νP of Fe10-Al14-Bgm are 2.6–3.5% and 3.1–4.7% lower than those of MgSiO3 bridgmanite end-member, respectively. These data are used with literature reports on bridgmanite with different Fe and Al contents to quantitatively evaluate pressure and compositional effects on their elastic properties. Comparing with one-dimensional seismic profiles, our modeled velocity profiles of major lower-mantle mineral assemblages at relevant P-T suggest that the lower mantle could likely consist of about 89 vol% (Al,Fe)-bearing bridgmanite. After considering uncertainties, our best-fit model is still indistinguishable from pyrolitic or chondritic models. 
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  5. Abstract The post-stishovite transition is a classic pseudo-proper typed ferroelastic transition with a symmetry-breaking spontaneous strain. This transition has been studied using high-pressure spontaneous strains, optic modes, and elastic moduli (Cij) based on the Landau modeling, but its atomistic information and structural distortion remain poorly understood. Here we have conducted synchrotron single-crystal X-ray diffraction measurements on stishovite crystals up to 75.3 GPa in a diamond-anvil cell. Analysis of the data reveals atomic positions, bond lengths, bond angles, and variations of SiO6 octahedra across the transition at high pressure. Our results show that the O coordinates split at ~51.4 GPa, where the apical and equatorial Si-O bond lengths cross over, the SiO6 octahedral distortion vanishes, and the SiO6 octahedra start to rotate about the c axis. Moreover, distortion mode analysis shows that an in-plane stretching distortion (GM1+ mode) occurs in the stishovite structure at high pressure while a rotational distortion (GM2+ mode) becomes dominant in the post-stishovite structure. These results are used to correlate with elastic moduli and Landau parameters (symmetry-breaking strain e1–e2 and order parameter Q) to provide atomistic insight into the ferroelastic transition. When the bond lengths of two Si-O bonds are equal due to the contribution from the GM1+ stretching mode, C11 converges with C12, and the shear wave VS1[110] polarizing along [110] and propagating along [110] vanishes. Values of e1–e2 and Q are proportional to the SiO6 rotation angle from the occurrence of the GM1+ rotational mode in the post-stishovite structure. Our results on the pseudo-proper type transition are also compared with that for the proper type in albite and improper type in CaSiO3 perovskite. The symmetry-breaking strain, in all these types of transitions, arises as the primary effect from the structural angle (such as SiO6 rotation or lattice constant angle) and its relevant distortion mode in the low-symmetry ferroelastic phase. 
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  6. Abstract Phase Egg and δ-AlOOH are two typical hydrous phases that might exist in the wet sedimentary layer of subducted slabs under mantle conditions. They are thus regarded as potential water carriers to Earth’s deep mantle. In this report, we report the full elastic constants of both phases determined by Brillouin scattering and X-ray diffraction measurements under ambient conditions. Our results indicate that the hydrogen-bond configurations in the crystal structures of the two phases have a profound effect on their principal elastic constants. The adiabatic bulk modulus (KS) and shear modulus (G) calculated from the obtained elastic constants using the Voigt-Reuss-Hill averaging scheme are 158.3(201) GPa and 123.0(60) GPa for phase Egg and 162.9(31) GPa and 145.2(13) GPa for δ-AlOOH, respectively. These results allow us to evaluate elastic moduli and sound velocities of hydrous minerals in the Al2O3-H2O-SiO2 ternary system (simplified composition of subducted wet sedimentary layer) at ambient conditions, including the contrast of the acoustic velocities VP and VS for the reaction AlSi3OH = δ-AlOOH + SiO2 (stishovite) and the evolution in the elastic moduli and sound velocities of hydrous minerals as a function of density. 
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  7. Abstract

    The recent observation of unusually high thermal conductivity exceeding 1000 W m−1K−1in single‐crystal boron arsenide (BAs) has led to interest in the potential application of this semiconductor for thermal management. Although both the electron/hole high mobilities have been calculated for BAs, there is a lack of experimental investigation of its electronic properties. Here, a photoluminescence (PL) measurement of single‐crystal BAs at different temperatures and pressures is reported. The measurements reveal an indirect bandgap and two donor–acceptor pair (DAP) recombination transitions. Based on first‐principles calculations and time‐of‐flight secondary‐ion mass spectrometry results, the two DAP transitions are confirmed to originate from Si and C impurities occupying shallow energy levels in the bandgap. High‐pressure PL spectra show that the donor level with respect to the conduction band minimum shrinks with increasing pressure, which affects the release of free carriers from defect states. These findings suggest the possibility of strain engineering of the transport properties of BAs for application in electronic devices.

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  8. Abstract

    Two distinct stacking orders in ReS2are identified without ambiguity and their influence on vibrational, optical properties and carrier dynamics are investigated. With atomic resolution scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM), two stacking orders are determined as AA stacking with negligible displacement across layers, and AB stacking with about a one‐unit cell displacement along theaaxis. First‐principles calculations confirm that these two stacking orders correspond to two local energy minima. Raman spectra inform a consistent difference of modes I & III, about 13 cm−1for AA stacking, and 20 cm−1for AB stacking, making a simple tool for determining the stacking orders in ReS2. Polarized photoluminescence (PL) reveals that AB stacking possesses blueshifted PL peak positions, and broader peak widths, compared with AA stacking, indicating stronger interlayer interaction. Transient transmission measured with femtosecond pump–probe spectroscopy suggests exciton dynamics being more anisotropic in AB stacking, where excited state absorption related to Exc. III mode disappears when probe polarization aligns perpendicular tobaxis. The findings underscore the stacking‐order driven optical properties and carrier dynamics of ReS2, mediate many seemingly contradictory results in the literature, and open up an opportunity to engineer electronic devices with new functionalities by manipulating the stacking order.

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