Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology

, Volume 104, Issue 2, pp 142–162

The influence of bulk composition on the speciation of water in silicate glasses


  • Lynn A. Silver
    • Division of Geological and Planetary SciencesCalifornia Institute of Technology
  • Phillip D. Ihinger
    • Division of Geological and Planetary SciencesCalifornia Institute of Technology
  • Edward Stolper
    • Division of Geological and Planetary SciencesCalifornia Institute of Technology

DOI: 10.1007/BF00306439

Cite this article as:
Silver, L.A., Ihinger, P.D. & Stolper, E. Contr. Mineral. and Petrol. (1990) 104: 142. doi:10.1007/BF00306439


Infrared spectroscopy was used to determine the concentrations of molecular water and hydroxyl groups in hydrous rhyolitic, orthoclasic, jadeitic, and Ca−Al-silicate glasses synthesized by quenching of melts from elevated presure and temperature. The rhyolitic glasses and some of the Ca−Al-silicate glasses were quenched from water-vapor-saturated melts and used to determine the solubility of water in melts of these compositions. For all compositions studied, hydroxyl groups are the dominant hydrous species at low total water contents, whereas molecular water dominates at elevated water contents. Although the trends in species concentrations in all these compositions are similar, the proportions of the two hydrous species are influenced by silicate chemistry: increasing silica content and K relative to Na both favor molecular water over hydroxyl. Results on rhyolitic glass demonstrate that molecular water is also favored by decreasing temperature at T<850°C. For rhyolitic glasses quenched from vapor-saturated melts, the mole fraction of molecular water is proportional to water fugacity for P(H2O)≤1500 bars, demonstrating that the behavior of molecular water is approximately Henrian at total water contents up to at least several weight percent. Data on water solubility for albitic, orthoclasic, and Ca−Al-silicate melts to higher pressures can also be fit by assuming Henrian behavior for molecular water and can be used to set constraints on the partial molar volume of water in these melts. The demonstration of Henry's law for molecular water in these liquids provides a link between spectroscopic measurements of microscopic species concentrations and macroscopic thermodynamic properties.

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© Springer-Verlag 1990