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In situ X-Ray Diffraction of Shock-Compressed Fused Silica

Author(s): Tracy, Sally June; Turneaure, Stefan J; Duffy, Thomas S

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Abstract: Because of its widespread applications in materials science and geophysics, SiO_{2} has been extensively examined under shock compression. Both quartz and fused silica transform through a so-called "mixed-phase region" to a dense, low compressibility high-pressure phase. For decades, the nature of this phase has been a subject of debate. Proposed structures include crystalline stishovite, another high-pressure crystalline phase, or a dense amorphous phase. Here we use plate-impact experiments and pulsed synchrotron x-ray diffraction to examine the structure of fused silica shock compressed to 63 GPa. In contrast to recent laser-driven compression experiments, we find that fused silica adopts a dense amorphous structure at 34 GPa and below. When compressed above 34 GPa, fused silica transforms to untextured polycrystalline stishovite. Our results can explain previously ambiguous features of the shock-compression behavior of fused silica and are consistent with recent molecular dynamics simulations. Stishovite grain sizes are estimated to be ∼5-30  nm for compression over a few hundred nanosecond time scale.
Publication Date: 29-Mar-2018
Citation: Tracy, Sally June, Stefan J. Turneaure, and Thomas S. Duffy. "In situ x-ray diffraction of shock-compressed fused silica." Physical review letters 120, no. 13 (2018): 135702. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.120.135702.
DOI: 10.1103/physrevlett.120.135702
ISSN: 0031-9007
EISSN: 1079-7114
Pages: 135702
Language: eng
Type of Material: Journal Article
Journal/Proceeding Title: Physical Review Letters
Version: Final published version. Article is made available in OAR by the publisher's permission or policy.

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