Physics of the Solid State

, Volume 55, Issue 5, pp 1063–1069 | Cite as

Temperature-induced phase transition in quartz nanocrystals dispersed in pseudotachylite

  • V. I. VettegrenEmail author
  • R. I. Mamalimov
  • G. A. Sobolev
  • S. M. Kireenkova
  • Yu. A. Morozov
  • A. I. Smul’skaya
Phase Transitions


The size and concentration of α-quartz nanocrystals dispersed in samples of pseudotachylite and the internal stresses in these nanocrystals have been determined using infrared spectroscopy in the temperature range 300–800 K. Pseudotachylite is a product of intense crushing of granite that undergoes in the Earth’s crust faults. It has been found that the size of the nanocrystals is ∼20 nm and does not depend on temperature. As the temperature increases, their concentration decreases monotonically and tends to zero at ∼650 K. This process is paralleled by a growth of the concentration of β-quartz nanocrystals. The α-quartz nanocrystal concentration regains its initial level with decreasing temperature. Thus, the α → β phase transition in quartz nanocrystals in pseudotachylite starts at temperatures lower by ∼500 K than that in the bulk of the macrocrystal (846 K), and is stretched by ∼350 K. At room temperature, the unit cell of nanocrystals is compressed by surface tension forces. These forces retard the α → β phase transition. The thermal expansion coefficient of nanocrystals is larger than that of macrocrystals, which entails a decrease of compression and a monotonic decrease of the concentration of α-quartz nanocrystals with increasing temperature.


Phase Transition Thermal Expansion Coefficient Phonon Wave Vector Mountain Rock Temperature Induce Phase Transition 
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Copyright information

© Pleiades Publishing, Ltd. 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • V. I. Vettegren
    • 1
    Email author
  • R. I. Mamalimov
    • 1
  • G. A. Sobolev
    • 2
  • S. M. Kireenkova
    • 2
  • Yu. A. Morozov
    • 2
  • A. I. Smul’skaya
    • 2
  1. 1.Ioffe Physical-Technical InstituteRussian Academy of SciencesSt. PetersburgRussia
  2. 2.Schmidt Institute of Physics of the EarthRussian Academy of SciencesMoscowRussia

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