First-principles calculations of high-pressure iron-bearing monoclinic dolomite and single-cation carbonates with internally consistent Hubbard U
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It has been proposed that iron has a significant effect on the relative stability of carbonate phases at high pressures, possibly even stabilizing double-cation carbonates (e.g., dolomite) with respect to single-cation carbonates (e.g., magnesite, aragonite and siderite). X-ray diffraction experiments have shown that dolomite transforms at ~35 GPa to a high-pressure polymorph that is stable to decomposition; however, there has been disagreement on the structure of the high-pressure phase (Mao et al. in Geophys Res Lett 38, 2011. doi: 10.1029/2011GL049519; Merlini et al. in Proc Natl Acad Sci 109:13509–13514, 2012. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1201336109). Ab initio calculations interfaced with an evolutionary structure prediction algorithm demonstrated that a C2/c polymorph of pure CaMg(CO3)2 dolomite is more stable than previously reported structures (Solomatova and Asimow in Am Mineral 102:210–215, 2017, doi: 10.2138/am-2017-5830). In this study, we calculate the relative enthalpies up to 80 GPa for a set of carbonate phases including Fe-bearing solutions and endmembers, using the generalized gradient approximation and a Hubbard U parameter calculated through linear response theory to accurately characterize the electronic structure of Fe. When calculated with a constant U of 4 eV, the spin transition pressure of (Mg,Fe)CO3 agrees well with experiments, whereas an internally consistent U overestimates the spin transition pressure by ~50 GPa. However, whether we use constant or internally consistent U values, a higher iron concentration increases the stability field of dolomite C2/c with respect to single-cation carbonate assemblages, but iron-free dolomite is not stable with respect to single-cation carbonates at any pressure. Thus, high-pressure polymorphs of Fe-bearing dolomite could in fact represent an important reservoir for carbon storage within oxidized sections of Earth’s mantle.
KeywordsDolomite Ankerite Siderite Carbonates High pressure Lower mantle
We thank K. Jarolimek, H. Hsu and H.J. Kulik for discussions. We are thankful to N. Near-Ansari for assistance with compiling relevant software and managing libraries on FRAM, the high-performance computing cluster at Caltech. This work is supported by the U.S. National Science Foundation through award EAR-1551433.
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