Physics and Chemistry of Minerals

, Volume 44, Issue 6, pp 445–453 | Cite as

Melting relations in the MgO–MgSiO3 system up to 70 GPa

  • Satoka OhnishiEmail author
  • Yasuhiro Kuwayama
  • Toru Inoue
Original Paper


Melting experiments in a binary system MgO–MgSiO3 were performed up to 70 GPa using a CO2 laser heated diamond anvil cell. The quenched samples were polished and analyzed by a dualbeam focused ion beam (FIB) and a field emission scanning electron microscope (FE-SEM), respectively. The liquidus phase and the eutectic composition were determined on the basis of textual and chemical analyses of sample cross sections. Our experimental results show that the eutectic composition is the Si/Mg molar ratio of ~0.76 at 35 GPa and it decreases with increasing pressure. Above 45 GPa, it becomes relatively constant at about 0.64–0.65 Si/Mg molar ratio. Using our experimental data collected at a wide pressure range up to 70 GPa together with previous experimental data, we have constructed a thermodynamic model of the eutectic composition of the MgO–MgSiO3 system. The eutectic composition extrapolated to the pressure and temperature conditions at the base of the mantle is about 0.64 Si/Mg molar ratio. The modeled eutectic composition is quite consistent with a previous prediction from ab initio calculations (de Koker et al. in Earth Planet Sci Lett 361:58–63, 2013), suggesting that the simple assumption of a non-ideal regular solution model can well describe the melting relation of the MgO–MgSiO3 system at high pressure. Our results show that the liquidus phase changes from MgO-periclase to MgSiO3-bridgmanite at 35 GPa for the simplified pyrolite composition (~0.7 Si/Mg molar ratio), while MgSiO3-bridgmanite is the liquidus phase at the entire lower mantle conditions for the chondritic composition (~0.84 Si/Mg molar ratio).


Lower mantle Melting Eutectic composition Bridgmanite High pressure Diamond anvil cell 



We thank T. Kimura, A. Shinozaki, S. Machida, and H. Hirai for help with the development of the CO2 laser heating system. A. Masuno and K. Ohara are acknowledged for preparation of glasses as the starting materials. We also thank H. Dekura and T. Taniuch for calculations, S. Tateno, Y. Nakajima and R. Nomura for discussions. This study was supported in part by the Grants-in-Aid of the Scientific Research (Nos. 26247073 and 15H05828 to T. Inoue) of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Satoka Ohnishi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Yasuhiro Kuwayama
    • 1
    • 2
  • Toru Inoue
    • 1
  1. 1.Geodynamics Research CenterEhime UniversityMatsuyamaJapan
  2. 2.Department of Earth and Planetary ScienceTokyo UniversityTokyoJapan

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