Samples of microcrystalline silica varieties containing variable amounts of the new silica polymorph moganite (up to ∼82 wt.%) have been studied by a combination of high temperature solution calorimetry using lead borate (2 PbO·B2O3) solvent and transposed temperature drop calorimetry near 977 K, in order to investigate the thermochemical stability of this new silica mineral. The enthalpy of solution at 977 K and the heat content (H977-H298) of "pure" moganite phase were estimated to be -7.16±0.35 kJ/mol and 43.62±0.50 kJ/mol, respectively. The standard molar enthalpy of formation is -907.3±1.2 kJ/mol. Thus, calorimetry strongly supports results of previous X-ray and Raman spectroscopic studies that moganite is a distinct silica polymorph. Its thermochemical instability relative to quartz at 298 K of 3.4±0.7 kJ/mol is marginally higher than those of cristobalite and tridymite. Structurally, this instability may be related to the presence of distorted 4-membered rings of SiO4 tetrahedra, which are not found in the quartz structure. The metastability relative to quartz may also explain the apparent scarcity of moganite in altered rocks and in rocks that are older than 130 my.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)
- Geochemistry and Petrology