Mg-vacant structural modules and dilution of the symmetry of hydrous wadsleyite, β-Mg2–xSiH2xO4 with 0.00≤x≤0.25
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The crystal structures of the two hydrous wadsleyite crystals with formulae, Mg1.75SiH0.50O4 (0.5H–β) and Mg1.86SiH0.28O4 (0.3H–β) have been analyzed in this study. The single-crystal X-ray diffraction data showed that the unit cells of the 0.3H–β and the 0.5H–β are metrically monoclinic with a slight distortion from the orthorhombic cell but their intensity distributions conform to the orthorhombic symmetry within the limit of experimental errors. The Fourier and the difference Fourier syntheses were calculated. Small but significant Fourier peaks were found at the site, Si2, in a normally vacant tetrahedral void adjacent to Mg3 site as reported for the monoclinic hydrous wadsleyite by Smyth et al.. From the comparison of the hydrous and anhydrous wadsleyite structures, the Mg-vacant structural modules were found to be the building units for the structure of hydrous wadsleyite. The dilution of symmetry from orthorhombic to monoclinic in the hydrous wadsleyite structure is interpreted qualitatively due to lack of mirror perpendicular to the a axis in the module. The mode of arrangement of the Mg-vacant structural modules interprets the symmetry and hydrogen content of the hydrous wadsleyite and gives the structural relationship between hydrous wadsleyite and hydrous ringwoodite.
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