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Physical Review Letters, 117, 135701, (2016) [doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.117.135701]

Deformation behavior across the zircon-scheelite phase transition

B. Yue, F. Hong, S. Merkel, D. Tan, J. Yan, B. Chen, and H.-K. Mao

The pressure effects on plastic deformation and phase transformation mechanisms of materials are of great importance to both Earth science and technological applications. Zircon-type materials are abundant in both nature and the industrial field; however, there is still no in situ study of their deformation behavior. Here, by employing radial x-ray diffraction in a diamond anvil cell, we investigate the dislocation-induced texture evolution of zircon-type gadolinium vanadate (GdVO4) in situ under pressure and across its phase transitions to its high-pressure polymorphs. Zircon-type GdVO4 develops a (001) compression texture associated with dominant slip along ⟨100⟩{001} starting from 5 GPa. This (001) texture transforms into a (110) texture during the zircon-scheelite phase transition. Our observation demonstrates a martensitic mechanism for the zircon-scheelite transformation. This work will help us understand the local deformation history in the upper mantle and transition zone and provides fundamental guidance on material design and processing for zircon-type materials.

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© Sébastien Merkel, Université de Lille, France

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